Pope Francis has asked for forgiveness for the theft of indigenous statues from a church near the Vatican, and says they have been recovered, undamaged.

‘`As bishop of the diocese [of Rome], I ask forgiveness” for what happened, Francis has said during a session of the Vatican’s summit on the Amazon, according to reports from a press pool.

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The indigenous statues which were stolen and dumped in the Tiber River on Monday, “have been found” and “have not been damaged,” the pope has indicated.

Arch-conservatives had celebrated the removal of the artefacts, which represent the Pachamama (Mother Earth), Incan goddess, considering their presence in a Catholic place of worship a pagan atrocity.

Vanguard Nigeria News

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