The Pope by plane (Ansa)


10 September 2019Xenophobia "is a human disease, like measles" and those who raise their walls "will be left alone". Thus Pope Francis during the press conference on the return flight from his 31st apostolic visit to Mozambique, Madagascar and Mauritius. Responding to a question from a Mozambican journalist about xenophobia in Africa, the Pope stressed that the phenomenon "is not just a problem for Africa".

"It is a disease", he adds, "enters a country, a continent". "And we put walls ... and the walls leave only those who make them. Yes (the walls) leave out so many people but those who - he continued - remain inside the walls will remain alone, and at the end of history defeated by powerful invasions" .

Francesco then reiterated that xenophobia "is a disease", a "justifiable" disease, in quotation marks "as it was done in the last century with the purity of the breed. The xenophobias "often ride on the so-called political populisms," the Pope added, stressing that he had sometimes heard "speeches that resemble those of Hitler in '34".

"We see - he said - that there is a refrain in Europe" that returns but "also in Africa", where the cultural problem to be solved is, according to Francis, tribalism. "There it takes a job of education, of bringing the different tribes together to make a nation", he went on recalling how in Kenya tribalism (a form of "internal xenophobia") led to genocide in Rwanda.

"No to all colonizations, even ideological"
"If today there are no geographical colonizations, at least not many, there are not, however, there are ideological colonizations, which want to enter the culture of peoples and change that culture and homogenize humanity", Pope Francis said.

"It is the image of globalization as a sphere - he explained -, all equal, each point equidistant from the center, while true globalization is not a sphere but a polyhedron, where every people and nation retains its own identity, but unites to all humanity ". "While the ideological colonization - the pontiff added - seeks to erase the identity of others to make them equal. And they come with ideological proposals that go against the nature and history and values ​​of that people. And we must respect the identity of peoples , and this is a premise to be always respected and so we banish all colonization ".

"In Europe, well-being does not cause more children"
"Africa is a young continent, it has a young life - said Francis, responding to journalists on the return flight from Madagascar -. As I said in Strasbourg, the mother Europe has almost become the grandmother Europe, she has aged. We are living a winter very serious demographic in Europe ". "I don't know in which country, but it is an official statistic of the government of that country - he underlined-: in the year 2050 in that country there will be more pensioners than people who work. It is tragic". "What is the origin of this aging of Europe? - he continued - I have a personal opinion: I think that well-being is the root, sticking to well-being. 'Yes, but we are fine, I don't have children because I have to buy the villa , doing tourism, a child is a risk, you never know ". It is a well-being that leads you to grow old. Instead Africa is life". "I found in Africa a gesture I had found in the Philippines and in Colombia. In Cartagena: the people who showed me the children - he said -. They said: 'This is my treasure, this is my victory'. The same gesture I saw it in Eastern Europe, in Iasi, with a grandmother who showed the child and said, this is my triumph ".