Pope Calls for Peace in Myanmar

News: Video Reports
by William Mahoney, Ph.D.  •  ChurchMilitant.com  •  March 4, 2021   

Bloodshed and bravery

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TRANSCRIPT

Pope Francis is calling for an end to Myanmar's bloody conflicts, which have left nearly 20 civilians dead.

Pope Francis: "I wish to draw the attention of the authorities involved [to the fact] that dialogue prevails over repression and harmony over discord."

In remarks at Wednesday's general audience, the pontiff appealed to the international community to make sure the aspirations of the Burmese people are not suffocated by violence.

Pope Francis: "May the young people of that beloved land be given the hope of a future where hatred and injustice leave room for encounter and reconciliation."

The Holy Father concluded with a reference to his initial statement in early February when the military first took over, claiming irregularities in the election of Aung San Suu Kyi's party.

Pope Francis: "[May] the path towards democracy taken in Myanmar in recent years be renewed by the concrete gesture of releasing various political leaders in custody."

Catholics in the country have added their numbers to the protests, with one sister displaying courage in what some are describing as the country's own "Tiananmen moment."

Sister Ann New Tong knelt before police on Sunday to implore they stop the violence against peaceful protestors.

Many noticed a similarity between Sr. Tong and a Chinese man who faced off Communist tanks in 1989, likewise calling for an end to the slaughter of peaceful protesters in Beijing's Tiananmen Square.

Other religious sisters, priests, seminarians and lay faithful began participating in protests several weeks ago.

The violence escalated quickly after the military takeover, with the first causality being a 20-year-old woman who was shot in the head.

Cardinal Charles Bo of Yangon has been calling for peace in homilies and statements, as has the country's conference of Catholic bishops.

The pope's call for a cessation of bloodshed echoes that of the United States and Europe, with the Chinese Communist Party remaining strategically neutral.

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