Pope Says World on Very Limit of Nuclear War

Pope Says World on Very Limit of Nuclear WarPope Says World on Very Limit of Nuclear War

Pope Francis expressed fears on Monday that the world is at the “very limit” of nuclear war.

Reuters reported that he made the remark when aboard a flight for a visit to Chile and Peru, as cited by The Hill.

His statements came in the wake of a false ballistic missile alert issued in Hawaii that rattled the United States over the weekend.

Pope Francis did not specifically mention the false alert, but said in response to a question about whether he is worried about the prospect of nuclear conflict, “I think we are at the very limit. I am really afraid of this. One accident is enough to precipitate things.”

As reporters boarded his plane bound for Chile, Vatican officials handed out a photograph taken in 1945 that shows a young Japanese boy carrying his dead brother on his shoulders following the US nuclear attack on Nagasaki.

“I was moved when I saw this. The only thing I could think of adding were the words ‘the fruit of war’,” Francis said, referring to a caption put on the back of the image.

“I wanted to have it reprinted and distributed because an image like this can be more moving than a thousand words. That is why I wanted to share it with you,” he said.

Pope Francis has often flagged the danger of nuclear warfare and in November he appeared to harden the Catholic Church’s teaching against nuclear weapons, saying countries should not stockpile them even for the purpose of deterrence.

The false alert was issued to individuals in Hawaii amid high tensions over North Korea’s nuclear program. State officials have said the alert was mistakenly sent out when an employee pushed the wrong button.

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is investigating the incident.

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