Pope Francis has stated that the international community must stop Islamic State militants on their quest for power and influence. The Pope says that it is the responsibility of all nations to unite against the extremists, not just one country to fight the evil alone.
Francis did not say outright that airstrikes and bombs were the correct method to stop Islamic extremism, but he did not condemn the method either.
"In these cases, where there is an unjust aggression, I can only say that it is legitimate to stop the unjust aggressor," Francis said.
"I underscore the verb 'to stop'. I am not saying 'bomb' or 'make war', but stop him (the aggressor). The means by which he can be stopped must be evaluated. Stopping the unjust aggressor is legitimate," he added.
Pope Francis said he was willing to travel to Iraq himself, but felt that the timing was not right for a visit to the nation. A senior cardinal is currently serving in Iraq on behalf of the Vatican, distributing funds and ministering to refugees.
Publication date: August 20, 2014