In Armenia, Francis risks rift with Turkey by calling historic killings 'genocide'

June 24, 2016 3:47 PM

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Pope Francis risked causing a new rift between the Vatican and Turkey in the first of his visits during a three-day trip here by pointedly calling the World War I-era killings of some 1.5 million Armenians "genocide," a term Turkish leaders have staunchly rejected.

The pontiff used the word in a meeting with Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan Friday evening, adding it to prepared remarks that had carefully avoided the term.

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