Pope Francis speaks during the 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly on September 25, 2015, at the United Nations in New York
Pope Francis speaks during the 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly on September 25, 2015, at the United Nations in New York © Dominick Reuter - AFP
Pope Francis speaks during the 70th session of the United Nations General Assembly on September 25, 2015, at the United Nations in New York
AFP
Last updated: September 26, 2015

Pope throws weight behind Iran nuclear deal

Pope Francis on Friday threw his support behind Iran's accord with major powers as he backed a goal of global abolition of nuclear weapons.

The Iran agreement "is proof of the potential of political goodwill, exercised with sincerity, patience and constancy," Francis said in an address to the United Nations.

"I express my hope that this agreement will be lasting and efficacious, and bring forth the desired fruits with the cooperation of all the parties involved," he said.

Francis made his remarks a day after a friendly welcome at the US Congress, where many Republican lawmakers have vehemently criticized President Barack Obama for negotiating with Iran, an enemy of the United States and Israel since its 1979 Islamic revolution.

In his UN address, Francis also appealed anew for the protection of Christians and other people persecuted by extremists in Syria and Iraq.

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