In Mosul, the Pope saw the destruction caused by the Islamic State (ISIS) terrorists. He visited the square where the then ISIS leader Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi proclaimed his caliphate in 2014 and prayed for all war victims.
"Here in Mosul, the tragic consequences of war are too clear. Today, despite everything, we reaffirm our conviction that brotherhood is stronger than fratricide, hope is stronger than death, and peace is stronger than war," said the Holy Father.
The City was home to over 120,000 Christians who fled religious persecution, and ISIS slaughters.
After Mass in Irbil, #PopeFrancis met with Abdullah Kurdi, father of the 3-yr-old Alan Kurdi whose drowning off the coast of Turkey in 2015 shocked the world.�� Vatican Media pic.twitter.com/i4kk6RmQ4x
The Pope was also in Qaraqosh, where he visited the Immaculate Conception of Qaraqosh Cathedral, whose reconstruction was completed a few months ago.
The Pope's State visit will end in Erbil, the capital of Iraq's Kurdistan, where he will offer a public mass attended by 10,000 people.
This is the first apostolic visit hosted by Iraq and has had a very positive outcome to achieve understanding and peaceful coexistence in a region where religious disputes affect its inhabitants' lives.
#Iraq | Pope Francis I is paying a three-day State Visit to the Middle Eastern country, the first one made by a Holly Pontiff to the Muslim nation. pic.twitter.com/jGxq2CLsT7