Pope Francis Urges Nations to ‘Welcome and Protect’ Afghan Refugees

Pope Francis Urges Nations to ‘Welcome and Protect’ Afghan Refugees


ROME, Italy — Pope Francis launched an appeal for Afghan refugees Sunday, calling for prayers and generous reception of those seeking asylum.

“In these agitated moments that see Afghans seeking refuge, I pray for the most vulnerable among them,” the pope told the crowds gathered in Saint Peter’s Square for his weekly Angelus address.

“I pray that many countries will welcome and protect those who seek a new life,” the pontiff continued. “I also pray for internally displaced people to have the necessary assistance and protection.”

“May young Afghans receive education, an essential commodity for human development,” he concluded, and “may all Afghans, both at home, in transit, and in the host countries, live with dignity, in peace and fraternity with their neighbors.”

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Sunday marked the third time Francis has underscored the plight of the Afghan people following the government takeover by the Islamist Taliban movement.

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