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Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Small bomb found at Brazil shrine Pope Francis was due to visit

The device was found in a lavatory at the sanctuary of Aparecida, between Rio de Janeiro, where Francis arrived on Monday, and Sao Paolo.

It was discovered on Sunday by personnel from the Brazilian air force as they carried out security checks of the area ahead of the Pope's visit on Wednesday.

The bomb was detonated safely by military police.

"It was a homemade device with little potential to cause fatalities," the military said in a statement.

"Such episodes formed part of our security forces' training in Aparecida and at no point were civilians' lives in danger." Police said the lavatory was located in an area that would not be used during the papal visit.

The Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida is Brazil's most revered Catholic pilgrimage site.

It protects a famous 18th-century clay statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary, which is regarded by Brazilians as the country's main patroness.

Pope Francis is in Brazil to attend World Youth Day, an international Catholic festival expected to attract more than a million young pilgrims.
The Telegraph

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