Pope Francis calls for ending violence

VATICAN CITY (Sputnik): Pope Francis called for “abandoning the path of violence” during his traditional Sunday address to believers from the window of the Apostolic Palace at the Vatican in the wake of deadly attacks in Norway, Afghanistan, and the United Kingdom this week.

“Last week, various attacks took place in Norway, Afghanistan, England, that caused numerous deaths and wounded many. I express my nearness to the families of the victims. I beg you to please abandon the path of violence that is always a losing cause and is a defeat for everyone. Let us recall that violence begets violence”, the pontiff said, as quoted by the Holy See.

On Wednesday evening, a man shot arrows at people in the Norwegian town of Kongsberg, killing five and wounding several more. The shooter was soon arrested by the police and was identified as a 37-year-old Dane living locally, who had previously converted to Islam. The Norwegian police later said that the perpetrator, Espen Andersen Braathen, was suffering from a mental illness that apparently drove him to attack people. He admitted to his crimes and is willing to cooperate with the investigation.

Another attack took pl-ace in Afghanistan on Fri-day when a bombing hit a Shia mosque in the city of Kandahar. Three suicide b-ombers set off the blast, while a fourth attacker ope-ned fire at the mosque bui-lding. The explosion killed 63 people and injured 83 others, a source in a local h-ospital told Sputnik. The D-aesh terror group has claim-ed responsibility for the attack.

On the same day, UK Conservative lawmaker David Amess was stabbed to death in an attack that is being treated as a terrorist incident by police.

The 69-year-old died while at his constituency surgery in the Belfairs Methodist Church in the town of Leigh-on-Sea in Essex. Following the attack, the Essex Police said a 25-year-old UK citizen was arrested at the scene on suspicion of murder.

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