Cairo, Egypt, Apr 28, 2017 / 08:22 am
In his first speech in Egypt on Friday, Pope Francis denounced all forms of violence and hatred, saying that they are blasphemous when carried out in the name of God, or under the pretense of religion.
"Peace alone, therefore, is holy and no act of violence can be perpetrated in the name of God, for it would profane his Name."
"Together, in the land where heaven and earth meet, this land of covenants between peoples and believers, let us say once more a firm and clear 'No!' to every form of violence, vengeance and hatred carried out in the name of religion or in the name of God," he said April 28.
Pope Francis spoke to participants of an International Conference on Peace held at al-Azhar University as part of his April 28-29 visit to Cairo. The visit comes as the result of a recent thawing in relations between the Vatican and the university, which had been strained since 2011.