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Rome Reports

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Benedict XVI's brother sounds alarm again: “He suffers from a paralyzing illness”

Benedict XVI's health becomes news once again. The 90-year-old pope emeritus is visibly weak, and the latest to raise the voice of alarm is his own brother, Georg. 

In an interview with German magazine Neue Post, he assures Benedict suffers from a paralyzing illness that requires him “to use a wheelchair.” Georg says what worries him most “is that the paralysis could spread to his heart,” because “then, everything could end quickly.” He says he prays God will allow his brother “the grace of a good death, in a good moment” and hopes to be in Rome on April 16 to, like every year, celebrate his brother's birthday. Although, he admits “it's still some time away” and that “who knows what will happen in that period.”

On the other hand, according to French agency i.media, the pope emeritus' “entourage” says those claims are baseless. Benedict has mobility issues, but no neurological illness. 

This is not the first time Georg Ratzinger has sounded the alarm – following his brother's election as pope, Georg said he seemed too old and ill to perform his duties.