Pope Francis declared that the war in Ukraine is the "Third World War".

At the same time, the pontiff is sure that Ukraine is not the only victim.

La Civiltà Cattolica writes about it.

"There's a war going on, and I think it's a mistake to think that this is a cowboy movie with good guys and bad guys... It's also a mistake to think that it's a war between Russia and Ukraine and that's all. No. This war is a world war. For century, we have seen three (world wars. - Ed.): between 1914 and 1918, between 1939 and 1945, and now," Francis said.

The Pope noted that, as in any conflict, the people suffer first.

In this case, Ukrainian and, for some reason, according to Francis, Russian.

"After talking about Ukraine, I thought to say a word about the suffering of two peoples, Ukrainian and Russian. Because in wars people suffer... Then I remembered the girl who was blown up (propagandist Daria Dugina. - Ed.). at this stage, everything I said up to that point was forgotten and attention was drawn only to this reference. But I understand the reaction of the people, because they are suffering a lot," the pontiff said.

He also reiterated the previously stated thesis that NATO allegedly provoked Russia.

The Pope recalled his conversation with the head of one of the states (which one, Francis did not specify), who shared fears that "NATO is barking at the door of Russia," which fears for the security of its borders.

"Here, the victim of this conflict is Ukraine. Why this war could not be avoided. To understand, we need to study the dynamics of the development of the conflict. There are international factors that contributed to the outbreak of the war," he added.

In addition, the pope mentioned his visit to the Russian embassy in the Vatican, calling such a step "unprecedented."

"The pope never visits the embassy. He receives ambassadors personally only when they present their credentials, and then at the end of the mission with a farewell visit. I told the ambassador that I would like to speak with President Putin," concluded Francis.

Earlier, the Pope told the details of his participation in the release of the defenders of "Azovstal".

As it turned out, he participated in the largest exchange of prisoners between Ukraine and the Russian Federation, during which more than 200 defenders of Mariupol were freed.

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