Reuters - Video

Edition: US | UK | IN | CN | JP

video Top News

Pope Francis visits Buddhist temple in Sri Lanka

Wednesday, January 14, 2015 - 01:22

Pope Francis makes unexpected visit to a Buddhist temple in Sri Lanka. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).

▲ Hide Transcript

View Transcript

ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: Pope Francis made an unexpected stop to visit a Buddhist temple on Wednesday in the Sri Lankan capital, Colombo. Vatican officials said the Pope took up the invitation made by the monks' upon his arrival on Tuesday to visit the Mahabodhi Viharaya temple to demonstrate his friendship and to foster dialogue with Buddhists in a "friendly atmosphere". At the temple, the monks opened up a golden casket which contains the relics of Buddhist saints. The casket is only opened once a year in a special ceremony, but it was opened on Wednesday especially for the Pope. During his three day visit, Francis has been stressing the need for interfaith dialogue and religious harmony. Fighting between the mainly Hindu Tamils and the and mostly Buddhist Sinhalese majority ended in 2009 with a crushing defeat for the Tamils. A 2011 U.N. estimate put the death toll from the final army assault at up to 40,000 civilians. Pope Francis called on Sri Lanka to uncover the truth of what happened during its bloody civil war as part of a healing process between religious communities, as he arrived in Colombo a few days after the island's wartime leaders were voted out. About 70 percent of Sri Lankans are Buddhists. Hindus make up about 13 percent and Muslims 10 percent. Catholics are about 7 percent, split between ethnic Sinhalese and Tamils. Francis leaves on Thursday for the Philippines.

Press CTRL+C (Windows), CMD+C (Mac), or long-press the URL below on your mobile device to copy the code

Pope Francis visits Buddhist temple in Sri Lanka

Wednesday, January 14, 2015 - 01:22