Pope Benedict XVI and the Bishops’ Conference of Italy have spoken out against the assault of the Prime Minister of Italy, Silvio Berlusconi, who was struck in the face Sunday following a rally in Milan. Italy's leader suffered two broken teeth, a minor nose fracture and cuts on his face following the attack.
According to the BBC, a man hit Belusconi in the face with a souvenir-sized replica of the city's cathedral.
In a telegram sent to Berlusconi signed by Vatican Secretary of State, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, the Holy Father expressed his “paternal closeness” and hopes for a “quick recovery.”
The Italian bishops said the attack was “an episode of singular and abominable gravity. As we express our sincere closeness to Minister Berlusconi, we hope for a more serene and respectful cultural climate for our country so that the good of everyone will be realized in society and in political life.”
The director of the Holy See’s Press Office, Father Federico Lombardi, said the attack was “a very grave and worrisome act that manifests the real risk of violence when words are translated into actions.
“All violence must be firmly condemned immediately by all political parties and all levels of society.”