News / Europe

6 Arrested on Alleged Threat to Pope

Multimedia

Audio
Sabina Castelfranco

Six men have been arrested by the Metropolitan Police in London, suspected of preparing an attack against Pope Benedict who is on a state visit to Britain.

The arrests follow a warning Thursday night from the head of Britain's MI5 security service of a potential threat against the pope.

The five men, between the ages of 26 and 50, have been taken to a central London police station as officers were searching a business in central London and homes in the north and east of the city. None of the men have been charged.

It is not clear whether the investigations relate to a plot against the pope himself or an element of the visit.

Watch Robert Raffaele Companion TV Report

Vatican spokesman, Rev. Federico Lombardi, says the pope was informed and is not worried and remained calm. Lombardi says the Vatican has complete trust in the British police and does not consider the situation particularly dangerous.

The pope's visit has drawn criticism in the mostly Protestant, highly secular Britain. His trip is also overshadowed by the Catholic Church's clerical abuse scandal, as well as the Vatican's stance on gay rights, abortion and contraception.  

Pope Benedict held a meeting with members of other religions Friday and stressed the need for dialogue and cooperation. He was speaking at Saint Mary's University College in Twickenham.

The pope said that as followers of different religious traditions working together for the good of the community, great importance is attached to this "side by side" dimension of cooperation, which complements the "face-to-face" aspect of continuing dialogue.

The pope said that in order for dialogue to be fruitful, it requires reciprocity by all those involved.

"I am thinking in particular of situations in some parts of the world, where cooperation and dialogue between religions calls for mutual respect, the freedom to practice one's own religion and to engage in acts of public worship, and the freedom to follow one's conscience without suffering ostracism or persecution, even after conversion from one religion to another," said Pope Benedict.

The pope added that when such respect and openness is established, people of different religions will work together effectively for peace and mutual understanding.

Earlier the pope met with thousands of cheering schoolchildren and students at the Saint Mary's University College's sports field, that has been inaugurated in honor of his predecessor Pope John Paul II and in view of the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

Young people cheered, sang and handed gifts to the pope. In an address to them, he urged them to ignore the temptations of the celebrity culture they live in. He said they should not be swayed by wealth and fame.

"Having money makes it possible to be generous and to do good in the world, but on its own it is not enough to make us happy," added Pope Benedict.  "Being highly skilled in some activity or profession is good, but it will not satisfy us unless we aim for something greater still. It might make us famous but it will not make us happy."

The German pope was met by some 125,000 supporters at the start of his visit in Edinburgh, Scotland.  Queen Elizabeth II officially welcomed the pontiff.  This is only the second papal visit to Britain since the Church of England broke away in the 16th century. Pope Benedict is expected to conclude his trip with a beatification mass for 19th century cardinal John Henry Newman.

You May Like

Video On The Scene: In Gaza, Darkness Brings Dread and Death

Palestinians fear nighttime bombardment, VOA correspondent finds More

African Small Farmers Could Be Key to Ending Food Insecurity

Experts say providing access to microloans, crop insurance, better storage facilities, irrigation, road systems and market information could enable greater production More

University of Michigan Wins Solar Car Race

Squad guided its student-designed solar-powered vehicle to fifth consecutive time victory in eight-day bi-annual American Solar Challenge More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spati
X
Reasey Poch
July 28, 2014 7:18 PM
China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video Vietnamese Staging Chinese Product Boycott After Oil Rig Spat

China recently pulled an oil rig from an area of the disputed South China Sea that Vietnam also claims. Despite the action, the incident has had a lingering effect on consumers in Vietnam. VOA's Reasey Poch reports from Hanoi on an effort to boycott Chinese products.
Video

Video ESA Spacecraft to Land on a Comet

After a long flight through deep space, a European Space Agency probe is finally approaching its target -- a comet millions of kilometers away from earth. Scientists say the mission may lead to some startling discoveries about the origins of the water on earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Young Africans Arrive in US for Leadership Program

President Barack Obama's Young African Leadership Initiative has brought hundreds of young Africans to the United States for a six-week program aimed at building their knowledge and skills in fields such as public administration and business. Out of the 50,000 young Africans who applied for the program, just one percent was accepted. VOA's Laurel Bowman caught up with some of those who made the cut and has this report.
Video

Video In Honduras, Amnesty Rumors Fuel US Migration Surges

False rumors in Central America are fueling the current surge of undocumented young people being apprehended at the U.S. border. The inaccurate claims suggest the U.S. will give amnesty to young migrants from the region. As VOA's Brian Padden reports from Honduras, these rumors trace back to President Obama's 2012 executive order to halt deportations for some young undocumented immigrants already living in the United States.
Video

Video Students in Business for Themselves

They're only high school students, but they are making accessories for shoes, fabricating backpacks and doing product photography - all through their own businesses. It's the result of a partnership between a non-profit organization that teaches entrepreneurship and their schools. VOA's Mike O'Sullivan and Deyane Moses met the budding entrepreneurs near Los Angeles.
Video

Video Astronauts Train in Underwater Lab

In the world’s only underwater laboratory, four U.S. astronauts train for a planned visit to an asteroid. The lab - called Aquarius- is located five kilometers off Key Largo, in southern Florida. Living in close quarters and making excursions only into the surrounding ocean, they try to simulate the daily routine of a crew that will someday travel to collect samples of a rock orbiting far away from earth. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid