Pope compares Ukrainians suffering with Stalin´s genocide

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Francis calls for prayers comparing the ´terrible suffering the Ukrainian people´ to the 1930´s famine in the country 

Pope Francis on Wednesday, November 23, stated that the suffering of the Ukrainians because of the was compared to the artificially created famine in the country by Stalin in 1930´s. According to a report by the Associated Press, this statement by the Pope marks a sharp increase in his rhetoric against Russia. The Pope made these comments about Ukraine while addressing a general audience.  

“Saturday begins the anniversary of the terrible genocide of the Holodomor, the extermination by starvation artificially caused by Stalin between 1932-1933″, said Francis, the report states. He further added, “Let us pray for the victims of this genocide and let us pray for so many Ukrainians children, women, elderly, babies who today are suffering the martyrdom of aggression.” 

The famine that Francis referred to, took place in 1932 and 1933 in Ukraine. Named Holodomor, it was a manmade famine engineered by the Soviet government of Joseph Stalin. According to the Holodomor Museum in Kyiv, only 17 nations have officially acknowledged the famine.  

But the report adds, academic opinion remains divided about whether a famine constitutes as genocide. The report also states, it is unclear if Stalin intended to purposefully kill Ukrainians or whether it was the result of state incompetence combined with natural conditions.

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