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Pope Francis leaves Armenia

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By Euronews
Pope Francis leaves Armenia

<p>On his last day in Armenia Pope Francis attended an open air liturgy in Etchmiadzin.</p> <p>Unusually the ceremony was led by the head of Armenia’s main Apostolic church, Karekin the second, and not the pope.</p> <p>Armenia’s church split from Rome in the fifth century following a religious dispute.</p> <p>The pope has been involved in his own dispute during the trip, upsetting Turkey, by calling their mass killing of one and half million Armenians in 1915 a genocide on the first day of his visit.</p> <p>Pope Francis departed from a prepared speech to specifically use the word genocide.</p> <p>Turkey’s deputy prime minister promptly accused him of having a Crusader mentality.</p> <p>The pope first used the genocide label last year in a ceremony at the Vatican and Turkey angrily responded by recalling its ambassador to the Vatican for 10 months.</p> <p>The pope, who delighted his hosts by referring several times to the slaughters and visiting Yerevan’s genocide memorial, has urged Armenia and Turkey to seek reconciliation.</p>