Skip to main content
Complete Olympic Games coverage at your fingertips
Your inside track on the Olympic Games
Enjoy unlimited digital access
$1.99
per week for 24 weeks
Complete Olympic Games coverage at your fingertips
Your inside track onthe Olympics Games
$1.99
per week
for 24 weeks
// //

The mother of Khant Nyar Hein, a student shot during a crackdown on protesters, reacts at his funeral in Yangon on March 16, 2021.

AFP Contributor#AFP/AFP/Getty Images

Pope Francis appealed on Wednesday for an end to bloodshed in Myanmar, saying: “Even I kneel on the streets of Myanmar and say ‘stop the violence’.”

Francis made the appeal, his latest since a Feb. 1 coup, at the end of his weekly general audience, held remotely from the Vatican library because of COVID-19 restrictions.

More than 180 protesters have been killed as security forces try to crush a wave of demonstrations.

Story continues below advertisement

“One more time and with much sadness I feel the urgency to talk about the dramatic situation in Myanmar, where many people, most of them young, are losing their lives in order to offer hope to their country,” he said.

In language symbolizing what protesters have done, Francis said: “Even I kneel on the streets of Myanmar and say ‘stop the violence.’ Even I open my arms and say ‘Let dialogue prevail’.”

Francis may have been referring to a video and photographs of a Catholic nun pleading with security forces on her knees not to shoot protesters last week in the Myanmar city of Myitkyina, both of which went viral on the Internet.

Myanmar nun Sister Ann Rose Nu Tawng kneels in front of police officers to ask security forces to refrain from violence against children and residents in Myitkyina, Myanmar, on March 8, 2021.

MYITKYINA NEWS JOURNAL/Reuters

The nun, Sister Ann Rose Nu Tawng, later told reporters she had told the police to spare the children and shoot her instead.

There are fewer than 800,000 Roman Catholics in the predominantly Buddhist country.

Francis, who visited Myanmar in 2017, said: “Blood does not resolve anything. Dialogue must prevail.”

Myanmar’s Roman Catholic leader Charles Maung Bo, has also called for an end to the bloodshed.

Story continues below advertisement

Our Morning Update and Evening Update newsletters are written by Globe editors, giving you a concise summary of the day’s most important headlines. Sign up today.

Your Globe

Build your personal news feed

  1. Follow topics and authors relevant to your reading interests.
  2. Check your Following feed daily, and never miss an article. Access your Following feed from your account menu at the top right corner of every page.

Follow topics related to this article:

View more suggestions in Following Read more about following topics and authors
Report an error
Due to technical reasons, we have temporarily removed commenting from our articles. We hope to have this fixed soon. Thank you for your patience. If you are looking to give feedback on our new site, please send it along to feedback@globeandmail.com. If you want to write a letter to the editor, please forward to letters@globeandmail.com.

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

If you would like to write a letter to the editor, please forward it to letters@globeandmail.com. Readers can also interact with The Globe on Facebook and Twitter .

Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff.

We aim to create a safe and valuable space for discussion and debate. That means:

  • Treat others as you wish to be treated
  • Criticize ideas, not people
  • Stay on topic
  • Avoid the use of toxic and offensive language
  • Flag bad behaviour

If you do not see your comment posted immediately, it is being reviewed by the moderation team and may appear shortly, generally within an hour.

We aim to have all comments reviewed in a timely manner.

Comments that violate our community guidelines will not be posted.

UPDATED: Read our community guidelines here

Discussion loading ...

To view this site properly, enable cookies in your browser. Read our privacy policy to learn more.
How to enable cookies