Pope Benedict XVI: Muslims are Our Brothers, Coexistence With Them is Necessary

Asked what he thinks of the murder of Monsignor Padovese in Turkey by his driver on June 3, Pope Benedict XVI expressed his deep sorrow but, at the same time, pointed out that it would be a grave error to attribute the responsibility of the event to Turkey or the Turks. In fact, as he explained, the murder was committed for personal reasons rather than for political or religious motives. The Pope stressed that the event must not prevent a dialogue with Islam and said that “Despite the differences, Muslims are our brothers”. He then exhorted believers to find a common and shared vision and to imitate the divine patience that helps to restore peace after having suffered violence. Despite rumours of a link between the murder (by beheading) and Islamic fundamentalists who want to eliminate Christians from Turkey, the Vatican remains cautious.