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Black smoke signals inconclusive papal vote

The rise of black smoke from the Vatican's Sistine Chapel indicates the absence of an agreement among cardinals on a new pope

Reuters , Wednesday 13 Mar 2013
Black Smoke
Black smoke rises from the chimney on the Sistine Chapel, in this still image taken from video, indicating no decision has been made after the first voting session on the second day of the election of a new pope, at the Vatican, March 13, 2013 (Photo: Reuters)

Black smoke rose from the Vatican's Sistine Chapel on Wednesday, signalling Roman Catholic cardinals had not agreed on a pope to succeed Benedict on their first full morning of voting in a secret conclave.

Cardinals held an initial ballot on Tuesday and held two more on Wednesday morning, with the black smoke showing that both were inconclusive, to the disappointment of crowds gathered in the nearby St. Peter's Square.

Another two rounds were due to be held in the afternoon. The 115 cardinals will remain sequestered in the Vatican until they elect the Church's 266th pontiff. When they agree on a pope, white smoke will rise from the chimney and the bells of St Peter's basilica will peal.

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