Putin snubs the Popes offer to meet to discuss ending the war in Ukraine

Russia's president Vladimir Putin has seemingly snubbed one of the world's most important religious figures.

The despotic president, who launched an invasion on Ukraine in February, was offered an invitation to meet Pope Francis.

And he even offered to fly to Russia to make it happen.

But speaking to Italian newspaper Corriere della Sera, the Pope has apparently been ghosted by Putin.

The offer was made three weeks into the invasion through the Vatican's secretary of state, Cardinal Pietro Parolin.

The Pope said: “I was willing to go to Moscow.

“Of course, it would be necessary for the leader of the Kremlin to make available some window of opportunity.

“But we still have not had a response and we are still pushing, even if I fear that Putin cannot and does not want to have this meeting at this moment.”

The Pope was also asked if he was going to visit Ukraine's capital of Kyiv but stated he would not visit the country yet until he has spoken with Putin..

He said: “I'm not going to Kyiv for now. I feel I shouldn't go. I have to go to Moscow first, I have to meet Putin first.”
The Pope had a phone call with the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill, in March about the war.

Recalling that, he said: “I listened and told him: 'I don’t understand any of this. Brother, we are not clerics of the state, we cannot use language of politics, but that of Jesus.

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“For this we need to find the paths of peace, to stop the firing of arms.

“Such brutality, how can you not try to to stop it?'

“Twenty-five years ago in Rwanda we saw the same thing.”

On non-Russian invasion topics, the Pope also confirmed that he had a “torn ligament” in his knee, requiring surgery, which is why he cancelled a number of recent public engagements.

He added: “I've been like this for a while, I can't walk.

"Once upon a time, popes were carried on gestatorial chairs.

"A bit of pain, of humility, is necessary.”

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