After 1,000-year split, pope and Russian patriarch embrace in Cuba

February 12, 2016 11:53 PM

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HAVANA Pope Francis and Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill embraced and kissed on Friday in a historic meeting, uniting to issue a global appeal for the protection of Christians under assault in the Middle East.

Nearly 1,000 years after the Eastern and Western branches of Christianity split apart, the meeting at an airport terminal in Cuba was the first ever between a Roman Catholic pope and a Russian Orthodox patriarch.

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