Pope: Don't close door on dialogue with Islamic State

"I never say 'all is lost', never," said Pope Francis.

By REUTERS
November 25, 2014 19:56
1 minute read.
Vatican

Pope Francis. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
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ABOARD PAPAL PLANE - Pope Francis said on Tuesday that while it was "almost impossible" to have a dialogue with Islamic State insurgents, the door should not be shut.

"I never say 'all is lost', never. Maybe there can't be a dialogue but you can never shut a door," he told reporters on his plane returning from Strasbourg, France, where he addressed the European Parliament and the Council of Europe.

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"It is difficult, one could say almost impossible, but the door is always open," he said in response to a question about whether it would be possible to communicate with the militants.

Ultra-radical Islamic State has captured thousands of square miles (km) of territory in Iraq and Syria, beheaded or crucified prisoners, massacred non-Sunni Muslim civilians in its path and displaced tens of thousands of people.

The Iraqi government, backed by US-led air strikes, has been trying to push back Islamic State, although Shi'ite Muslim militias and Kurdish peshmerga have helped contain the Sunni insurgents and repelled them in some provinces. .

Pope Francis repeated comments made earlier this year that while it was legitimate to fight an "unjust aggressor", this had to be supported by an international consensus.

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