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Pope visits Nazi German death camp Auschwitz, begs God to forgive 'so much cruelty'

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Pope Francis' only public comment to mark his visit to Auschwitz-Birkenau: a guest book entry asking God's "forgiveness for so much cruelty." 

Friday's early morning visit to the notorious Nazi death camp in Poland was the first-ever by a leader of the Roman Catholic Church who was not alive during the WWII era.

During the war, an estimated 1.1 million people died at the camps. Ninety percent were Jews, along with Soviet prisoners, Poles, homosexuals and other individuals Adolf Hitler considered to be "undesirable" by Nazi standards.

Pope visits Nazi German death camp Auschwitz, begs God to forgive 'so much cruelty'

Pope Francis met briefly with 11 survivors of the camp, including a 101-year-old woman who played the violin in a camp orchestra, and a woman in her 90s who helped deliver babies born to  imprisoned women.

The pope spent his entire two-hour visit in silence, except for a few words exchanged with survivors and rescuers.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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For more news of the day, check out our 60 Second Circa for Friday AM, July 29, 2016.


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