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Pope Francis greets relatives of political prisoners in Venezuela

2016-05-04

Today, the Pope welcomed relatives of two of more than 70 political prisoners who are in Venezuela: the father of opposition leader Leopoldo Lopez; and the daughter of Antonio Ledezma, the former mayor of Caracas.

LEOPOLDO LÓPEZ GIL 
"I have come to Rome first to greet the Holy Father. I want to thank him on behalf of all Venezuelan political prisoners for his statement and the request he made to the Venezuelan government for peace around the country.”

VANESSA LEDEZMA
"I gave him a Venezuelan flag. I said, 'I give the Venezuelan flag to you with my heart, on behalf of all Venezuelans, on behalf of my father who is imprisoned unjustly.' I asked him to intercede for us on this new path of peace.”

Just last week the Pope sent a personal letter to the president of Venezuela, Nicolas Maduro. Although details were not disclosed, the public  knows the Pope's letter expresses concern about the humanitarian crisis in the country.

VANESSA LEDEZMA
"We want what the whole of Venezuela wants, to solve these conflicts peacefully. We want peace, we want freedom, and with the Pope's blessing, not only to me, but to all Venezuelans, we will achieve it."

LEOPOLDO LÓPEZ GIL 
"We have many difficulties as a family and of course, as a people. We are just one of many Venezuelans who are going through difficult times and we ask that somehow, once again, justice and freedom for all is restored."

Now they return home with a rosary from the Pope, and they want to give it to the political prisoners when they are released. They hope it will be very soon.


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