Pope Says NATO Might Have Provoked Russian Invasion of Ukraine

источник — The Wall Street Journal

ROME⁠—Pope Francis said that the “barking of NATO at the door of Russia” might have led to the invasion of Ukraine and that he didn’t know whether other countries should supply Ukraine with more arms.

The pope at the same time deplored the brutality of the war and criticized the leader of the Russian Orthodox Church for defending the invasion in religious terms, warning that Patriarch Kirill of Moscow “cannot turn himself into Putin’s altar boy.”

Pope Francis made his remarks in an interview with Italian daily Corriere Della Sera. He described Russia’s attitude to Ukraine as “an anger that I don’t know whether it was provoked but was perhaps facilitated” by the presence in nearby countries of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.

Meanwhile, Patriarch Kirill of Moscow delivered a sermon Tuesday at the Kremlin’s Cathedral of the Archangel, falsely claiming that Russia never attacked another country.

“We don’t want to go to war with anyone, Russia has never attacked anyone,» he said, in remarks carried by the Interfax news agency.

«It’s amazing that a great and powerful country never attacked anyone,» he added. «It only defended its borders.»

Since February, Pope Francis has deplored the suffering of Ukrainians and denounced the invasion but refrained from explicitly naming Russia as the aggressor, reflecting both a Vatican tradition of neutrality and his own agenda of better relations with the Russian Orthodox Church, as well as a reluctance to align the Vatican with U.S. foreign policy.

“In Ukraine, it was other states that created the conflict,” Pope Francis said in the interview, without identifying which states. He likened the war to other conflicts that he said were fomented by international interests: “Syria, Yemen, Iraq, one war after another in Africa.”

“I don’t know how to answer—I am too far away—whether it is right to supply the Ukrainians” with weapons, the pope said. “What’s clear is that in this land arms are being tested… Wars are fought for this: to test the arms we have made.”

In the past, Ukrainians have criticized the pope for describing their conflicts with Russia as “fratricidal,” which they have said plays down Moscow’s aggression.

The pope said that he was ready to travel to Moscow to meet with President Vladimir Putin to appeal for peace, but that the Kremlin hadn’t responded to the offer. He said he told the Russian ambassador to the Vatican at the start of the war: “Please stop.”

, , , ,

Добавить комментарий