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Rome Reports

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Pope Francis asks for an end to the violence in the Central African Republic and Nigeria

At the end of the General Audience, Pope Francis called for peace in two countries. On one hand, he called for the cessation of violence in Nigeria, where a church was attacked by a gunman who opened fire on parishioners during Sunday Mass. At least 12 people were killed and nearly 20 injured.

In the Central African Republic, violence between the séléka and anti-balaka factions is intensifying. In the last few hours, a religious mission has been looted and about 50 people have been killed.

"I deeply grieve last Sunday's tragedy in Nigeria, inside a church where innocent people were murdered. And unfortunately, this morning added the news of the homicidal violence in the Central African Republic against the Christian communities. I hope that all forms of hatred and violence will cease and that no more shameful crimes perpetrated in places of worship will be repeated where the faithful gather to pray. Let us think of our brothers and sisters from Nigeria and the Central African Republic and pray together for all of them."