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September 16, 2014
Holy See defers to courts on possible release of would-be Papal assassin
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.- Vatican spokesman Joaquin Navarro-Valls announced yesterday that the Holy See would accept the decision of the courts regarding the possible prison release of Ali Agca--would-be assassin of the late John Paul II.

Yesterday afternoon, Navarro-Valls, who directs the Vatican Press Office, said in a written declaration that, "The Holy See only learned the news of a possible release from prison of Ali Agca from news agencies.”

He added that "The Holy See, faced with such a juridical question, confides in the decisions of the courts involved in this matter."

Agca shot and wounded the late Pope as he rode through St. Peter’s Square in an open-air “Popemobile” in May of 1981.

He has been held in a Turkish prison for over 20 years, where, in 1983 Pope John Paul II himself visited Agca and called on faithful to “pray for my brother…whom I have sincerely forgiven.”