Pope expresses dismay at deaths of Gaza aid workers

Pope Francis on Wednesday expressed his dismay at the killing of seven aid workers delivering food in Gaza for the World Central Kitchen charity in an Israeli strike this week.

“I again renew my firm request for an immediate ceasefire in the Gaza Strip,” Francis said at the end of his weekly general audience.

“I express my deep sorrow for the volunteers killed while they were distributing humanitarian aid in Gaza.

“I pray for them and for their families and I renew my appeal for access to humanitarian aid to be allowed to the exhausted, suffering civilian population and for the hostages (held by Hamas) to be immediately released”.

He also showed the rosary and copy of the New Testament of a young Ukrainian soldier killed in the war sparked by the Russian invasion.

“I would like everyone to be silent for a moment and think of this boy and the many others like him who have died in this madness of war,” the pontiff said.

“War always destroys.

Let us think of them and pray”.