.- A leading committee chairman of the Italian Congress is calling for the reopening of the investigation into the assassination attempt of Pope John Paul II of May 13, 1981. Paolo Guzzanti, who heads a congressional committee that investigates issues related to the former Iron Curtain, said new information revealed in the Pope’s book “Memory and Identity” warrants the case be reexamined. Pope John Paul II dedicates a section of the new book to the events of 1981, noting that a plot was behind the assassination attempt carried out by Ali Agca. “Ali Agca, as everyone says, is a professional assassin,” the Pope writes. “This means that the attempt was not his own idea, that someone else planned it and hired him.”
Investigations into the attempt, which ended in March of 1998, established that the most credible hypothesis was that the Bulgarian Secret Service, guided by Moscow, was behind the plot.
Recently Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger noted that Agca has written several letters about why the assassination was not successful. According to the cardinal, Agca considers his failure to kill the Pope “inexplicable,” and he said the Turkish gunmen “wants to know about the third secret of Fatima.”
In “Memory and Identity,” John Paul II writes that upon arriving at the hospital, he was already “on the other side,” and he reiterated his conviction that Our Lady of Fatima saved him by guiding the path of the bullet.
Agca was sentenced to life in prison, but four years ago he was moved to Turkey, where he is serving a sentence for the murder of a journalist.