Pope Francis is at risk of an assassination attempt by the Islamic extremists of Isil, the Vatican has been warned, ahead of his first visit to a Muslim-majority country this weekend.
As the 77-year-old pontiff prepares to travel to Albania on Sunday for a one-day visit, Iraq’s ambassador to the Holy See said there were credible threats against the pontiff’s life.
The leader of the Roman Catholic Church could also be vulnerable when he travels to Turkey in November, the ambassador said.
Jihadists from Isil have in recent weeks boasted of wanting to extend their caliphate to Rome, the heart of Western Christendom, and have talked of planting the jihadist black flag on top of St Peter’s Basilica.
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