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Central African Republic

Pope brings peace message to Central African Republic

Pope Francis arrived Sunday in the conflict-torn Central African Republic, brushing aside security concerns to bring a message of peace and reconciliation to a country where violence between Christian and Muslim militants has forced nearly 1 million from their homes over the last two years and divided the capital city.

Schoolgirls in yellow and white dresses — the colors of the Holy See flag — joined government and church authorities to welcome Francis at the heavily secured Bangui airport. The pope's Alitalia charter landed just beyond the settlement for displaced residents that has cropped up on the airport's edge, housing some of the people displaced by the...