Pope Francis called the Coptic Patriarch, Pope Tawadros II, this afternoon to offer his condolences regarding the assassination of 21 Egyptian Coptic Christians. The 21 Christians, held hostage by Islamic State-affiliated fundamentalists, were slain on Monday. Pope Francis called this a “barbaric assassination” of innocent people who were put to a gruesome death just for practicing the Christian faith.
The brutal killings have raised anxieties in Italy, considering Libya’s close proximity, just across the Mediterranean Sea. Moreover, one of the militants in the assassination video exclaimed the words, “conquer Rome”, the world’s head city of Catholicism.