On Thursday, March 25, the Prime Minister of Ukraine Denys Shmyhal had an audience with His Holiness Pope Francis. During the meeting, issues of humanitarian aid and the development of bilateral cooperation were discussed, in particular cooperation with the Baby Jesus Pediatric Hospital ("Ospedale Pediatrico Bambino Gesu").
The Prime Minister thanked His Holiness Pope Francis for his important contribution to ensuring stability in the European region, as well as for the efforts of the Holy See to end the war and restore peace in Ukraine.
"Your mission as a defender of justice is extremely important in the fateful period for Ukraine. I believe that your moral and spiritual authority will be able to play an important role and help restore peace in Ukraine," said Denys Shmyhal.
Moreover, the Head of Government expressed gratitude to His Holiness for the humanitarian initiative "Pope for Ukraine" worth EUR 16 million, within which more than 900,000 Ukrainians received humanitarian aid.
During the audience, the parties discussed the global situation with the COVID-19 pandemic, noting the importance of vaccination in combating the spread of the disease, as well as cooperation between the Ministry of Health and the Baby Jesus Pediatric Hospital.
"It is extremely important for us that children from Ukraine also have the opportunity to be treated in the best and most modern medical institutions in the world, which is undoubtedly the Baby Jesus clinic. I want to assure you that the Government is making every effort to eliminate bureaucratic obstacles and establish cooperation with the hospital as soon as possible," assured Denys Shmyhal.
The Ospedale Pediatrico Bambino Gesu is a tertiary care academic children’s hospital and is under the extraterritorial jurisdiction of the Holy See. It is one of the largest and most modern pediatric research medical institutions in Europe. Every year, the clinic provides treatment to more than 35,000 patients from around the world and is a recognized leader in the number of operations and transplants of any level of complexity.
In conclusion, the Prime Minister conveyed to His Holiness Pope Francis an invitation from the President of Ukraine Volodymyr Zelenskyy to pay a visit to Ukraine on the occasion of the 30th anniversary of Independence.