Denouncing Russia's “repugnant war” against Ukraine as a “cruel and sacrilegious inhumanity”, Pope Francis on Sunday told thousands of people in St. Peter's Square that every day brought more atrocities in a “senseless massacre".
In some of his strongest words yet since Russia's February 24 invasion, Francis said there was "no justification for this". He said this in an apparent reference to Russia, which sought to justify its invasion as vital for its own defence, but again stopped short of naming Russia as the aggressor.
Pontiffs typically have decried wars and their devastating toll on civilians without citing warmongers by name.
Francis also called on “all actors in the international community” to work toward ending the war.
“Again this week, missiles, bombs, rained down on the elderly, children and pregnant mothers,'' the pope said.
He said his thoughts went to the millions who flee. “And I feel great pain for those who don't even have the chance to escape,'' Francis added.