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Pope Benedict XVI on Saturday condemned the deadly Beirut car bombing that raised fears that Lebanon’s fragile political system could be torn apart by the war raging in neighbouring Syria, AFP reported.

Denouncing the “terrible attack that occurred in Beirut” the pope said he “joins in prayer with the bereaved families and the sadness of all Lebanese,” a Vatican statement said.

“The Holy Father condemns one more time the violence that is creating so much suffering,” said the statement, quoting from a telegram the pontiff sent to Lebanon’s Maronite Patriarch Bishara Rai.

The pontiff “asks God to give Lebanon and the entire region the gift of peace and reconciliation.”

Following Friday’s attack, the Vatican condemned the bombing “for its absurd murderous violence.”

France 24

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