Bin Laden death is papal miracle says Peru’s leader
Alan Garcia says it was no coincidence that Osama was killed on day of Pope John Paul's beatification
The death of Osama Bin Laden may have been carried out by American special forces, but they were helped by a miracle performed by the late Pope John Paul II, according to the president of Peru, Alan Garcia.
The 61-year-old, currently serving his second stint as leader of the South American country, believes it was no coincidence that the al-Qaeda leader was found and killed on the same day that the former pope, who died in 2005, was beatified in a ceremony at the Vatican.
Garcia, who has been president since 2006, told a TV station in Peru: "I have said that his first miracle has been to remove from the earth this demonic incarnation of crime, evil and hatred."
John Paul's successor, Pope Benedict XVI, personally declared him "blessed" - one step below sainthood - on Sunday. His beatification, just six years after his death, is one of the quickest in centuries and came after he was credited with a miracle by the Catholic Church, which decreed that soon after his death he cured a French nun of Parkinson's disease.
Despite performing that miracle, John Paul cannot be elevated to the sainthood until he performs a second one. However, Garcia says the former pope has wasted no time in doing so and delivered Bin Laden into the hands of the Americans within hours of his beatification.
Garcia added: "I think that's great news that should please Mr Obama." But presumably, as a good Catholic, Garcia will not rejoice in Bin Laden's death.
Although the Catholic Church recognised that Bin Laden bore "serious responsibility for spreading divisions and hatred among populations, causing the deaths of innumerable people, and manipulating religions to this end", it added: "In the face of a man's death, a Christian never rejoices, but reflects on the serious responsibilities of each person before God and before men." ·
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