Pope Francis meets Ukrainian President Zelenskyy at Vatican, pleads for peace

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Head of the Roman Catholic Church, Pope Francis, on Saturday, had a meeting with Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, at the Vatican where he pleaded with world leaders to allow peace to reign.

Zelenskyy had arrived in Rome for talks with the Pope and Italian leaders in his first visit to the EU and NATO nation since Russia’s full-scale invasion and was recieved by the Pontiff.

After the meeting, Zelenskyy told reporters that it was a great honour to meet with the pontiff, who has previously offered to do what he can to try to end the war launched by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine a year ago.

“The Pope assured his constant prayer, paid witness to by his many public appeals and by his continued invoking of the Lord for peace, since February of last year,” a statement by the Vatican said after the meeting.

READ ALSO:Pope Francis slams Western firms, nations exploiting minerals in Congo

“Both agreed on the need to continue humanitarian effort. The Pope underlined, in particular, the urgent need for ‘humanitarian gestures’ toward the most fragile persons, innocent victims of the conflict,” the statement said.

Zelenskyy arrived at a military airfield at Rome’s Ciampino airport, and was recieved by Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani, state broadcaster RAI reported.

Shortly afterwards, Zelenskyy met with President Sergio Mattarella at the presidential Quirinale Palace, the first official appointment of what is expected to be a visit to the Italian capital lasting several hours, according to the broadcaster.

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