İrem UZUN -TDO- Pope Francis used his Christmas message to say that coronavirus vaccines must be available for all and pleaded with states to cooperate in the race to emerge from the pandemic. "Today, in this time of darkness and uncertainty during the pandemic, different lights of hope appear, like the discovery of the vaccines ... they must be available to everyone," the Pope said Friday during his traditional Urbi et Orbi (to the city and the world) message at the Vatican.
The pope traditionally delivers his Christmas message and blessing from the outdoor central balcony of St. Peter's Basilica, addressing thousands squeezed into the piazza below. This year, due to COVID-19 restrictions, that ceremony was moved to the Apostolic Palace, the official residence of the reigning pontiff, before a much smaller group. "We cannot allow the various forms of nationalism closed in on themselves to prevent us from living as the truly human family that we are," Francis said. "Nor can we allow the virus of radical individualism to get the better of us and make us indifferent to the suffering of other brothers and sisters."
In his message, Pope Francis also highlighted the plight of children caught up in wars, singling out victims in Syria, Yemen and Iraq. “On this day, let us turn our gaze to the many, all too many, children worldwide, especially in Syria, Iraq and Yemen who still pay the high price of war,” he said.