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December 8, 2019
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Pope asks French to welcome all nationalities

CASTEL GANDOLFO, Italy, 22.8.2010 15:00, (AFP)

Pope Benedict XVI on Sunday asked French pilgrims to welcome people of all origins days after France repatriated more than 200 Roma and Gypsies in a controversial crackdown.

The pope said Sunday's scriptures were "an invitation to know how to accept legitimate differences among humans, just like Jesus came to pull together men from every nation and speaking every language."

Benedict, speaking after his weekly Angelus prayer at his papal summer residence outside Rome, also invited parents to educate children in tolerance.

"Dear parents, may you be able to educate your children to universal fraternity," he told pilgrims from Paris in French.

Amid international criticism, France flew Roma and Gypsies to Romania on "a voluntary basis" on Thursday and Friday in exchange for grants of 300 euros (385 dollars) per person.

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