Pope Francis meets wives of Ukrainian soldiers fighting to defend Mariupol


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Pope Francis meets Kateryna Prokopenko and Yulya Fedosiuk in St. Peter’s Sq. on Might 11, 2022. / Vatican Media. Vatican Metropolis, Might 11, 2022 / 10:30 am (CNA). Pope Francis met on Wednesday morning with the wives of two Ukrainian soldiers who're presently preventing to defend the besieged metropolis of Mariupol.After his basic viewers on Might 11, the pope held the palms of the Ukrainian ladies, Kateryna Prokopenko, 27, and Yulya Fedosiuk, 29.Prokopenko is married to Ukrainian Lt. Col. Denis Prokopenko, the man at present main the Ukrainian final stand to defend the Azovstal steel plant within the port metropolis of Mariupol.“You're our final hope. We hope that you would be able to save their lives. Please don’t allow them to die,” Kateryna Prokopenko might be heard telling Pope Francis in a brief video of their five-minute meeting.After the viewers, Prokopenko informed journalists in St. Peter’s Square: “We hope that this meeting will simply give us the prospect to save lots of their lives.”“Now we're prepared for the actions from the pope, from his delegation. And our soldiers are ready to be evacuated to a 3rd nation. They are prepared to lay down their arms in case of evacuation to the third country.”Vatican Media.Fedosiuk, who is married to Ukrainian soldier Sgt. Arseniy Fedosiuk, stated in a video interview recorded by the Italian newspaper La Repubblica that they informed the pope concerning the extreme circumstances inside the Azovstal steel plant, the place their husbands are preventing.“We advised the pope that 700 of our troopers are injured. They've gangrene, amputations, their flesh is rotting, and lots of of them are lifeless. We couldn’t bury them. We couldn’t bury them [according] to Christian tradition and we ask pope to help us,” she stated.The Ukrainian ladies additionally handed the pope two letters, in line with the newspaper Corriere della Sera.The first letter was signed by Metropolitan Onufriy, who was elected Orthodox Metropolitan of Kyiv and All Ukraine in 2014, by which he reportedly appealed to Russian President Vladimir Putin to let the Azovstal fighters go. The second letter was from the ladies themselves, who requested the pope during their assembly to “come to Ukraine and to talk with Putin.”“We ask pope to help us. We ask pope to be the third get together of this conflict and to let them go through the inexperienced corridor, and he advised us that he will pray for us and he's doing all the things for that,” Fedosiuk stated.On the end of his basic viewers, Pope Francis also greeted Vietnam Warfare photographer Nick Ut.The former Related Press photographer is understood for his 1972 Pulitzer Prize-winning photograph, “The Terror of Conflict,” which is also referred to as the “Napalm Woman.”Pope Francis meets Vietnam Struggle photographer Nick Ut and Phan Thi Kim Phuc in St. Peter’s Sq. on Might 11, 2022. Vatican Media.Ut, who is Vietnamese American, met the pope with Phan Thi Kim Phuc, who's the younger woman pictured in the photograph. She was nine years previous on the time the photograph was taken in her hometown of Trảng Bàng through the Vietnam Warfare.Kim Phuc, who's now 59 years previous, lives in Toronto together with her family. Vatican Information reported that she stated: “That picture continues to remind me that I lost my childhood. Solely over time, nevertheless, did I understand its value.”