Pope Francis wraps up Myanmar visit, heads to Bangladesh amid Rohingya crisis
Pope Francis wrapped up his visit to Myanmar on Thursday with a Mass for young people before heading to neighboring Bangladesh. Francis has so far refrained from speaking out about the Muslim Rohingya refugee crisis out of diplomatic deference to his hosts in Myanmar. The Vatican said the Pope wants to “build bridges” with the predominantly Buddhist nation. However, human-rights groups and Rohingya themselves have expressed disappointment that the pontiff, an advocate for refugees, refrained from condemning what the UN has said is a textbook case of ethnic cleansing, AFP said. Vatican spokesman Greg Burke said Francis took seriously the advice given to him by the local Catholic Church. It urged him to toe a cautious line and not even refer to the “Rohingya” by name during his trip.