Pope Francis inadvertently quotes Putin on Chide West’s war in Afghanistan – NBC10 Philadelphia

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Pope Francis has criticized the West’s recent involvement in Afghanistan as a foreign attempt to impose democracy – although he did so by quoting Russian Vladimir Putin while believing he was quoting German Angela Merkel .

Asked in a radio interview on Wednesday about the new political map emerging in Afghanistan following the withdrawal of the United States and its allies from the Taliban-controlled country after 20 years of war, the pope said he would respond. with a quote he attributed to the German Chancellor, whom he described as “one of the greatest political figures in the world”.

“It is necessary to stop the irresponsible policy of imposing one’s own values ​​on others and the attempts to build democracy in other countries on the basis of external models without taking into account historical, ethnic and religious issues and totally ignoring the traditions of others, ”the Pope said, using his own Spanish translation.

But the remarks were made last month by the Russian president in the presence of Merkel, during her visit to Moscow.

At the August 20 meeting, Putin scathingly criticized the West over Afghanistan, saying the Taliban’s rapid sweep over the country showed the futility of Western attempts to impose its own vision of democracy. . Merkel, meanwhile, urged Russia to use its contacts with the Taliban to push for Afghan citizens who assisted Germany to be allowed to leave Afghanistan.

The Pope’s interview with the Spanish Cadena COPE took place in the Vatican at the end of last week. The radio station owned by the Spanish Catholic Bishops’ Conference broadcast the speech on Wednesday and said its content had been approved by the Pope himself.

Francois also said that “not all eventualities were taken into account” in the departure of Western allies from Afghanistan.

“I don’t know if there will be a review (of what happened during the withdrawal), but there has been a lot of deception on the part of the new authorities (in Afghanistan),” the official said. Pope. “Either that or too much ingenuity. Otherwise., I don’t understand.”

Francis called on Christians around the world to engage in “prayer, penance and fasting” in the face of events in Afghanistan.


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