Pope Francis’ ‘white flag’ remark is fulfilled by criticism from Ukraine and allies

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Pope Francis' 'white flag' comment is met by criticism from Ukraine and allies

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Ukrainian and allied authorities slammed Pope Francis for stating that Kyiv ought to have the “courage” to work out an end to the war with Russia, a declaration lots of analyzed as a get in touch with Ukraine to give up.

The foreign minister of Poland, a singing ally of Kyiv, and Ukraine’s ambassador to the Vatican both utilized World War II examples to condemn the pope’s remarks, while a leader of among Ukraine’s Christian churches on Sunday stated that just the nation’s figured out resistance to Russia’s hostility had actually avoided a mass massacre of civilians.

In an interview tape-recorded last month with Swiss broadcaster RSI and partly launched on Saturday, Francis utilized the expression “the courage of the white flag” as he argued that Ukraine, dealing with a possible defeat, ought to be open to peace talks brokered by worldwide powers.

“How about, for balance, encouraging Putin to have the courage to withdraw his army from Ukraine? Peace would immediately ensue without the need for negotiations,” Polish Foreign Minister Radek Sikorski reacted with a post on X, previously Twitter.

In a different post, Sikorski drew parallels in between those requiring settlements while “denying (Ukraine) the means to defend itself” and European leaders’ “appeasement” of Adolf Hitler prior to World War II.

Andrii Yurash, Ukraine’s ambassador to the Holy See, stated that it was “necessary to learn lessons” from that dispute. His post on X appeared to compare the pope’s remarks to require “talking with Hitler” while raising “a white flag to satisfy him.”

A Vatican spokesperson later on clarified that the pope supported “a stop to hostilities (and) a truce achieved with the courage of negotiations,” instead of a straight-out Ukrainian surrender. Matteo Bruni stated that the reporter talking to Francis utilized the term “white flag” in the concern that triggered the questionable remarks.

“I think that the strongest one is the one who looks at the situation, thinks about the people and has the courage of the white flag, and negotiates,” Francis stated, when asked to weigh in on the argument in between those who state that Ukraine ought to accept peace talks and those who argue that any settlements would legitimize Moscow’s hostility.

Kyiv stays firm on not engaging straight with Russia on peace talks, and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has actually stated numerous times the effort in peace settlements need to originate from the nation that has actually been gotten into.

Throughout the war, Francis has actually attempted to keep the Vatican’s conventional diplomatic neutrality, however that has actually frequently been accompanied by obvious compassion with the Russian reasoning for attacking Ukraine, such as when he kept in mind that NATO was “barking at Russia’s door” with its eastward growth.

While the pope has actually spoken in the previous about the requirement for settlements in between Kyiv and Moscow, the RSI interview appears to mark the very first time when he openly utilized terms such as “white flag” or “defeated” while talking about the war.

Archbishop Sviatoslav Shevchuk, the head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, stated Sunday that surrender is not on the minds of Ukrainians.

“Ukraine is wounded, but unconquered! Ukraine is exhausted, but it stands and will endure. Believe me, it never crosses anyone’s mind to surrender. Even where there is fighting today: listen to our people in Kherson, Zaporizhzhia, Odesa, Kharkiv, Sumy,” Shevchuk stated while consulting with Ukrainians in New YorkCity He discussed the areas that have actually been under heavy Russian weapons and drone attacks.

Shevchuk likewise mentioned the cruelty of Moscow’s hostility, referencing the town near Kyiv where Russian profession left numerous civilians dead in the streets and in mass tombs. He argued that, if not for Ukrainians’ strong resistance as Russian forces progressed the capital in February 2022, the gruesome scenes seen in Bucha would have been “just an introduction.”

During the Angelus prayer on Sunday from the window ignoringSt Peter’s Square, Francis stated that he was hoping “for peace in the tormented Ukraine and in the Holy Land.”

“Let the hostilities which cause immense suffering among the civilian population cease as soon as possible,” he stated.