By Vatican News staff writer
Pope Francis on Sunday decried years of hostilities and strife in Libya and prayed for fruitful peace negotiations taking place at an international level.
He turned his thoughts to a group of Italian and Tunisian fishermen who were seized on 1 September by Libyan patrol boats, accused of fishing in territorial waters, and still detained in Benghazi.
Speaking after the recitation of the Angelus prayer in St. Peter’s Square, the Pope said "I pray for the various talks taking place at the international level, that they may be relevant for the future of Libya.”
“The time has come to stop all forms of hostility and encourage dialogue that will lead to peace and stability in the country,” he said.
Mentioning the plight of the fishermen and his closeness also to their families, he asked those present in the square to pray together for the fishermen and for Libya, in silence.
"I would like to address a word of encouragement and support to the fishermen stopped more than a month ago in Libya and their families,” the Pope said and he invoked Our Lady Star of the Sea to keep the hope alive that they will soon be able to embrace their loved ones.