Pope urges 'fraternal' dialogue with China

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Updated: Sun, 17 Aug 2014 01:15:16 EST

SEOUL, South Korea (AP) — Pope Francis has made a new gesture of outreach to China, saying he "earnestly" hopes to improve relations with Beijing and stressing the importance of honest dialogue.

Francis outlined his priorities for the Catholic Church in Asia during a meeting of the region's bishops Sunday, urging them to listen to people of different cultures but still remain true to their Catholic identity.

In a clear reference to China, he said: "In this spirit of openness to others, I earnestly hope that those countries of your continent with whom the Holy See does not yet enjoy a full relationship may not hesitate to further a dialogue for the benefit of all."

He added that he wasn't talking about political dialogue but "fraternal" relations.

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