Pope appeals for end to conflict in Syria

(AP)
In this photo dated 11 December 2012, 10-year-old Abdullah Ahmed, who suffered burns in a Syrian government airstrike and fled his home with his family, stands outside their tent at a camp for displaced Syrians in the village of Atmeh, Syria. More than 100,000 people have been killed since the start of Syria's conflict over two years ago

Pope Francis has called for an end to the fighting in Syria.

The Pope spoke of his "solidarity" with victims of the conflict during his weekly Angelus address on Sunday.

His comments came amid accusations that Syrian government forces used chemical weapons.

UN weapons inspectors are investigating the claims as the US, the UK and other countries consider military action on Syria.

The US claims there is "undeniable" proof that a chemical attack took place. Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Muallem has strongly denied the allegations.

Addressing the crowds in St Peter's Square, the Pope said he was following developments with "great suffering and concern".

"The growth in violence in a war between brothers, with a multiplication of massacres and atrocities that we have all been able to see in the terrible images of recent days, moves me once again to call in a loud voice for the fighting to cease," he said.

"It is not conflict that offers a perspectives of hope for resolving problems, but it is the capacity for meeting and dialogue."

He urged Syrians caught up in the conflict to keep "the hope of peace alive" and added that the international community must "do all it can to help the beloved Syrian nation find a solution to a war that sows destruction and death".

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