Pope Francis has called on Koreans to pray for the reunification of the divided peninsula.
The comments came on the second of a five-day visit to South Korea. On his first day North Korea fired rockets as the papal plane entered South Korean airspace, though they denied it was linked to the pontiff’s visit.
Speaking at the youth rally on Friday he went off script saying, “There are two Koreas, no there’s one, but it’s divided, the family is divided. This pain, how to help this family to reunite? Lord, we are one family. Help us reach unity. You can do it.”
He led them in a prayer for their ‘brothers in the North’. The peninsula remains technically at war under an armed truce since the Korean War of 1950-53.
He later met with eight survivors and two families of victims of the Sewol ferry disaster which claimed 300 lives in April.
He blessed the father of one of the victims who asked to be baptised, an event which is scheduled for Sunday.