Pope Francis pained by attacks in Ivory Coast and Turkey

Telegrams are sent to Mgr Raymond Ahoua, bishop of Grand-Bassam (Ivory Coast), and Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who met the Pope during his visit to Turkey in 2014.

Vatican City (AsiaNews) – Pope Francis sent messages expressing his closeness and solidarity after terrorists carried out attacks in in Grand-Bassam (Ivory Coast) and Ankara (Turkey). In them, the Holy Father offered his condolences and prayers for the victims.

In a telegram to Mgr Raymond Ahoua, bishop of Grand Bassam, Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin said, “Upon hearing the news of the heinous attack in Grand-Bassam, His Holiness Pope Francis presents condolences to the bereaved and assures the injured his spiritual closeness. He entrusts the victims to God’s mercy to welcome them into his peace and light. As he shares his sadness with the suffering people of Ivory Coast, the Holy Father again condemns violence and hatred in all their forms. As a token of comfort, he invokes an abundance of divine blessings on the Ivory Coast and all the families touched by this tragedy.”

In a telegram to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, whom the pontiff met in 2014 during a visit to Istanbul, Card Parolin writes, “Deeply saddened to learn of the injury and tragic loss of life caused by the bombing in Ankara, His Holiness Pope Francis assures the Turkish people of his spiritual closeness and solidarity. He prays for the eternal rest of those who have died and for all who mourn their loss, as well as for the recovery of those affected by this heinous act of violence. Mindful of the generous service being rendered by security and emergency personnel, His Holiness invokes the divine blessings of peace, healing and strength upon the nation.”