Pope Francis on Sunday reiterated his call on Palestinian militant group Hamas to release all hostages taken to the Gaza Strip during last weekend’s attack on Southern Israel.
Pope Francis renewed the call during weekly prayers at St Peter’s Square in Rome.
“I renew my call for the release of the hostages and I strongly demand that children, the elderly, women and all civilians do not become victims of the conflict,” he said.
Speaking ahead of an expected ground offensive on Gaza by Israeli troops, he also called for humanitarian corridors to be set up in the coastal enclave to save “the entire population”.
Hamas is believed to be holding more than 150 hostages seized last weekend.
Among the hostages are Israelis and citizens of other countries.
Francis also said the suffering of the people of Ukraine, who have been under attack by Russia since February 2022, should not be forgotten.
“Enough is enough,” the pope said, adding: “War always means failure – always.” (NAN)