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Rome Reports

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Vatican says it did not intervene on the exhumation of Franco's remains

On July 8, the Prime Minister of Spain gave an interview to Italian newspaper Il Corriere della Sera.

In it, he praised the pope saying, “in the past, Pope Francis helped me resolve problems surrounding Franco's body. In Valle de los Caídos there was a community of Benedictines against exhumation. I asked the Vatican to intervene, and everything was resolved.”

Thirteen days later, the Vatican picked up the story.

In this statement, the Holy See assures it has “on several occasions reiterated its respect for legality and the decisions of the competent governmental and judicial authorities. It has urged dialogue between the family and the Government, and has never ruled on the exhumation or the place of burial, because it is not within their competence."

The Vatican was upset after a high-level meeting in October 2018, when the Spanish government hinted that the Secretary of State supported not burying him in the Madrid cathedral.

In September 2019, Franco's remains were transferred from the Valle de los Caídos, which is a grave site for people during the Civil War, to a cemetery near Madrid.