Pope Francis delivers his blessing during his weekly general audience in St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, Wednesday, Nov. 15, 2017. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)
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Pope Francis Friday excoriated politicians who foment fear of migrants, saying they were sowing violence and racism, and urged them to "practice the virtue of prudence" to help them integrate.The pope, who has made defense of migrants and refugees a major plank of his papacy, made his comments in a message prepared for the Roman Catholic Church's World Day of Peace, which is celebrated on Jan. 1 each year.In elections in Germany in September, the far-right and anti-immigrant Alternative for Germany (AfD) party made significant gains, with electors punishing Chancellor Angela Merkel for her open-door policy and pushing migration policy to the top of the agenda in talks to form a coalition government.Italy's anti-immigrant Northern League, whose leader Matteo Salvini often gives fiery speeches against migrants, is expected to make gains in national elections next year.
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