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“Urbi et Orbi”: While radical Muslims killed 25 Catholics in Nigeria, the Holly Father Pope Benedict XVI called for World Peace.

Dec. 25, 2011. Pope Benedict XVI delivers his speech from the central loggia of St. Peter's Basilica, at the Vatican. Photo Credit AP

From the central loggia of St. Peter’s Basilica Pope Benedict XVI called for an end to the bloodshed in Syria and the resumption of Israeli-Palestinian peace talks in his Christmas message Sunday, an appeal for peace that was challenged by deadly attacks on Nigerian churches.

The Holly Father cited refugees from the Horn of Africaand flood victims in Thailand, among others, and called for greater political dialogue in Myanmar, and stability in Iraq, Afghanistan and Africa’s Great Lakes region.

The pope didn’t mention the deadly blasts on churches in  Nigeria, but the Vaticanissued a statement denouncing the attacks as a sign of “cruelty and absurd, blind hatred” that shows no respect for human life.

Early Sunday, an explosion ripped through a Catholic Church  during Christmas Mass near Nigeria’s capital of Abuja, and an emergency worker reported that 25 people were killed. A second explosion struck near a church in Nigeria’s restive central city of Jos, while two other explosions hit the northeast state of Yobe.

There was no immediately claim of responsibility for either explosion, but Nigeria has suffered a wave of sectarian attacks blamed on the radical Muslim sect Boko Haram.