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Vatican brings second group of Syrian refugees to Rome

Pope Francis greets a Muslim woman as he meets refugees at the Moria refugee camp on the island of Lesbos (CNS)

Following Pope Francis’s lead, the Vatican has brought a second group of Syrian refugees to Rome.

The Vatican said on Friday nine refugees, including three children, were accompanied by Holy See security personnel on their trip from Athens on Thursday. Two of the arrivals are Christians.

They had been living in Kara Tepe refugee camp after arriving on the Greek island of Lesbos by sea from Turkey.

Francis wants Europe to welcome the hundreds of thousands of migrants, fleeing war, persecution and poverty, who reached the continent from the Middle East, Asia and Africa, many aboard smugglers boats.

In April, the first group of Syrian refugees flew to Rome aboard Francis’s plane, when he returned from visiting Lesbos. That group and the latest arrivals are being housed by a Catholic charity.