The pontiff told the Corriere della Sera on Sunday.



repeatedly expressed his readiness to become a mediator in the negotiations between Moscow and Kiev, as well as hope for peace in Ukraine.

On the very first day of the Russian invasion — February 24 — Frantisek spoke on the phone with the President of Ukraine

, Vladimir Zelensky

, and instead of calling

Vladimir Putin

, he personally visited the Russian ambassador to convey to him a request to stop hostilities.

Later, he sent a message to Putin that he was ready to come to Moscow to meet him, but Russia ignored this request.

Later he explained that he did not go to Kyiv only because he did not have the opportunity to make the same visit to Moscow.

On March 16 last year, Patriarch


and Pope Francis had a telephone conversation.

According to the Pope, Kirill spent a long time reading information about geopolitics and the flight time of NATO missiles.

The Pope advised the patriarch to remember that he is not an official, not an "altar servant of Putin", and to speak in the language of faith and Jesus, appropriate for a priest.

At the end of October in the Vatican, French President

Emmanuel Macron

asked Pope Francis to call Russian President Vladimir Putin, Moscow Patriarch Kirill and US President

Joe Biden

to try to stop the war in Ukraine.

Later, in an interview with the Jesuit magazine America, the pontiff responded to accusations that he did not directly name the perpetrators of the war, limiting himself to calls for peace to both sides of the conflict.

According to Francis, when commenting on the war in Ukraine, he does not mention Russian President Vladimir Putin, because the role of the politician is "already known".

"Everyone knows my position, with or without Putin," Francis said.

"The unacceptable armed aggression and slaughter must be stopped," said the First Hierarch of the Roman Catholic Church.