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Syrian Orthodox Bishops

(April 24, 2013) The whereabouts of two Orthodox Bishops, kidnapped on Monday in Syria is still unknown. News agencies had reported on Tuesday evening that Greek Orthodox Archbishop Paul Yazigi and Syriac Orthodox Archbishop Yohanna Ibrahim had been released, but subsequent reports indicate that it is not so. On Tuesday the Director of the Holy See Press Office, Fr. Federico Lombardi, released a statement saying Pope Francis is following the events in Syria closely, and he was praying for the health and the liberation of the two kidnapped bishops.”
During his general audience in St. Peter’s Square on Wednesday, Pope Francis expressed concern over the kidnapping and urged for an end to violence and bloodshed and for a quick solution to the Syrian crises.
In a joint statement, the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate of Antioch and all the East and the Syriac Orthodox Pariarchate of Antioch and all the East said they “deeply regret what happened and regret all similar acts targeting civilians, regardless of their affiliation.” In their joint statement the Patriarchates called on the international community to help end the violence in Syria. They also addressed the kidnappers directly, saying “those whom they kidnapped are messengers of peace in this world. Their religious, social and national work witnesses for them”, the Patriarchates added..


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