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Pope Francis calls for international solidarity to respond to drought, war


After praying the Angelus in St. Peter's Square, Pope Francis turned his attention to the humanitarian crisis in Somalia, where more than 750,000 have been internally displaced due to severe drought.

POPE FRANCIS
The people of this region, already living in very precarious conditions, now find themselves in mortal danger due to drought. I hope that international solidarity may respond effectively to this emergency. Unfortunately, war diverts attention and resources, but these are the goals that demand the greatest commitment: the fight against hunger, health, and education.

Somalia is witnessing a historic two-year dry spell, and the number of people facing crisis hunger levels is expected to rise from five to seven million. 

The situation has been made only worse by climate change and rising food prices resulting from the war in Ukraine. 

The Pope also remembered the Ukrainian people suffering firsthand from the war. 

POPE FRANCIS
We ask the Lord for a special mercy, mercy for the martyred people of Ukraine.

His prayer comes just days after Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy confirmed a recent phone conversation with the Pope over Twitter. 

It was their third phone call since the start of the war, and comes as Pope Francis continues expressing his desire to travel to Ukraine in the near future.

JM