In his Easter message, Pope Francis prays for Ukraine, Syria

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Pope Francis waves from the pope-mobile during his inauguration Mass at St. Peter's Square on Tuesday (March 19) at the Vatican. RNS photo by Andrea Sabbadini

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(RNS) The Urbi et Orbi (Latin for “to the city and to the world”) message, delivered from the central balcony of the basilica where Pope Francis first appeared after his election a year ago, included a call to end “deadly force” on “defenseless” civilians in Syria, and urgent humanitarian aid for victims of the conflict.