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Pope: Now is the time to end indifference

Welcoming the new year, Pope Francis said it is time to end indifference and what he calls "false neutrality" regarding the injustice, persecution, wars and misery in the world.

Francis, celebrating Mass in St Peter's Basilica on Friday, said people wonder how it is possible that "the arrogance of the powerful continues to demean the weak, relegating them to the most squalid outskirts of our world".

He highlighted the men, women and children risking their lives to flee war, hunger and persecution.

The pope urged people to overcome indifference and "leave behind the false neutrality which prevents sharing".

Francis's formula for peace centred on co-operating to build "an ever more just and fraternal world".

And he wondered aloud how long human evil will keep sowing violence and hatred.

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