This photo taken and handout on March 27, 2020 by the Vatican Media shows Pope Francis presiding over a moment of prayer on the sagrato of St Peter’s Basilica, the platform at the top of the steps immediately in front of the façade of the Church, to be concluded with Pope Francis giving the Urbi et orbi Blessing, on March 27, 2020 at St. Peter's Square in the Vatican.( Photo:AFP )
Pope Francis on Sunday joined UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres's appeal for an "immediate global ceasefire", on the fifth anniversary of Saudi Arabia's intervention in Yemen's civil war.
"I join all those who have accepted this appeal and invite everyone to follow it by ceasing all forms of hostility, promoting the creation of humanitarian aid corridors, being open to diplomacy, and paying attention to the most vulnerable," the pope said in a message delivered after holding prayers.
Several explosions shook the Saudi capital Riyadh late on Saturday, which the Saudi-led military coalition blamed on Yemen's Iran-aligned Huthi rebels, who have repeatedly targeted Saudi cities with missiles, rockets and drones.
The attack came with the Saudi capital under curfew imposed to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Pope Francis pointed out that Guterres's call on Monday came during "the current COVID-19 emergency, which knows no borders".
"The joint commitment against the pandemic can lead everyone to recognise our need to strengthen our fraternal ties as members of one human family," the pontiff said.