Pope, Erdogan discuss Israel war on Gaza

AFP , Thursday 26 Oct 2023

Pope Francis spoke to Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday about the Israeli war in the Gaza Strip, emphasising the importance of a two-state solution, the Vatican said.

Gaza Strip
Palestinians inspect the rubble of destroyed buildings following Israeli airstrikes on the town of Khan Younis, southern Gaza Strip, Thursday, Oct. 26, 2023. AP


In a statement, it said the telephone call had been requested by Erdogan and focused on the "dramatic situation in the Holy Land".

"The pope expressed his sorrow for what is happening and recalled the position of the Holy See, expressing hope that a two-state solution and a special status for the city of Jerusalem could be achieved."

The Turkish presidency said in a statement that during the call with the pope, Erdogan had again stated he believed Israel's attack on Gaza had "reached the level of a massacre".

Erdogan added that "the international community's silence about what is happening is a shame for humanity".

Peace was only possible with the establishment of an independent state of Palestine, the Turkish statement said.

Erdogan said Wednesday he was canceling plans to visit Israel because of its "inhumane" war against Hamas militants in Gaza.

On 15 October, Pope Francis called for the establishment of humanitarian corridors to allow the delivery of essentials to the Gaza Strip, which is under heavy Israeli bombardment since 7 October.


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