VATICAN CITY, NOV 12, 2003 - Following is the telegram sent by the Holy Father to Carlo Azeglio Ciampi, president of the Italian Republic, after the attack this morning in Nassiriya, Iraq in which many Italian soldiers and 'carabinieri' lost their lives:
'I received with deep sorrow the news of the vicious attack in Nassiriya, Iraq in which Italian soldiers lost their lives while generously fulfilling their mission of peace. I express my firmest condemnation of this latest act of violence which, in addition to other savage acts which have taken place in that tormented country, does not aid the process of reconstruction and pacification. In lifting up my fervent prayer for the victims, I ask the Lord to grant Christian comfort to their family members to whom I feel particularly close in this hour of great sadness. I ask you, Mr. President, to convey the expression of my prayerful solidarity to the military and civilians who are at present committed to the arduous task of serving the Iraqi people.'
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