04/26/2021, 16.39
KOREA – VATICAN
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Bishop Lazarus You: Pope would like to visit North Korea

Pope Francis expressed the desire to visit during a meeting with the Bishop of Daejeon. In 2018 the pontiff received a verbal invitation from Kim Jong-un, but no official invitation followed. The Diocese of Daejeon has donated US$ 450,000 to the Vatican’s vaccine sharing campaign.

Seoul (AsiaNews/Agencies) – Pope Francis would like to visit North Korea to express his closeness to the entire Korean people, divided since the Korean War (1950-1953), this according to Bishop Lazarus You Heung-sik who spoke to the Yonhap news agency about his meeting with the pontiff on 17 April.

Bishop You of Daejeon knows the Pope, whom he accompanied and hosted during the pontiff's trip to South Korea in 2014.

Francis has expressed a desire to visit the North several times. In 2018, during a visit to the Vatican, South Korean President Moon Jae-in delivered a verbal invitation from North Korean leader Kim Jong-un.

At that time, talks between Pyongyang and Washington were underway, and positive developments were expected.

At that time, Francis said he was willing to go to North Korea if he received an official invitation. However, since then talks between North Korea and the United States, as well as between the two Koreas have broken down.

The Diocese of Daejeon has donated US$ 460,000 to the vaccine sharing campaign of the Office of Papal Charities.

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