Russian President Vladimir Putin presided over a ceremony at the Kremlin to annex four Ukrainian regions partly occupied by his forces. He accused the West of “outright satanism” during a 37-minute tirade at a ceremony announcing the annexation of four Ukrainian territories.

Following are extracts from his speech As the risks of nuclear war intensify the Russian president, in a fiery speech directed at the United States said “Now they have moved on entirely, to a radical denial of moral norms, religion, and family …” “The dictatorship of the Western elites is directed against all societies, including the peoples of the Western countries themselves.

This is a challenge to all. This is a complete denial of humanity, the overthrow of faith and traditional values. Indeed, the suppression of freedom itself has taken on the features of a religion: outright Satanism.” Pope Francis is very concerned about the hot rhetoric coming from Vladimir Putin, but the Holy See is also worried that there seems to be no effort but nations to make decisions that will lead to peace.

Pope Francis says: “World War III has been declared,” Pope Francis said in a wide-ranging conversation with the editors of European Jesuit publications on May 19, referring to Russia’s attack against Ukraine. The conversation was published by the Italian Jesuit publication La Civiltà Cattolica and the secular newspaper La Stampa on June 14 and is sure to spark discussion. “The world is at war,” he said.

“For me, today, World War III has been declared. This is something that should give us pause for thought. What is happening to humanity that we have had three world wars in a century?”