The Archbishop of Canterbury, Justin Welby, said Russia’s invasion of Ukraine had “opened the gates of hell” and unleashed “all evil forces” around the world, from murder and rape in occupied territory to famine and debt in Africa and Europe. writes The Guardian.
Justin Welby traveled to Ukraine last month where he met with church leaders as well as people displaced by the conflict.
He said he was marked by “the size of the mass graves in Bucha, the photographs of what people suffered there at the hands of the Russian occupation forces – rapes, massacres, torture”.
The archbishop stated that the consequences of the invasion were also felt beyond the borders of Ukraine.
“We are actually in the same fight, even if from a distance. When Ukraine was invaded at the decision of President Putin, the gates of hell opened and all evil forces came out into the world,” he said in an interview with the BBC on Sunday.
“I was in Mozambique a week before I was in Ukraine, where there is famine all the way to the coast of East Africa,” he said.
“There is inflation… there is energy crisis, there is suffering, there is no medicine, all evil has been unleashed. Until the Russians withdraw and until the fire ceases, we cannot make progress on reconciliation,” he added.
In Britain, Welby said, rising food and fuel prices, also exacerbated by the war, had seen the number of people asking for help at food banks rise by 400 per cent in the past 18 months. “We see how the debts are increasing, there are all kinds of pressures on families,” he added.
Welby publicly criticized Russia’s war against Ukraine.