POPE Francis has declared the “world is at war” following a spate of attacks culminating in the bloody murder of a priest at the hands of ISIS terrorists.
The pontiff made the comments after multiple terror attacks have rocked Europe, focussing in France and Germany.
The 79-year-old declared that the recent atrocities could be seen as a Third World War, but added it was not a war of religion.
The head of the catholic church said: “The word that is being repeated often is insecurity, but the real word is war.
“Let’s recognise it. The world is in a state of war in bits and pieces.
“Now there is this one (war). It is perhaps not organic but it is organised and it is war.
“We should not be afraid to speak this truth. The world is at war because it has lost peace.”
The Pope also referred to Jacques Hamel, a man of the cloth from Normandy, who was forced to his knees by Daesh terrorists while giving mass in his church, before they slit his throat in the most recent terror attack.
Two armed men, one of whom has been named as Adel Kermiche, stormed the French church on Tuesday morning before being shot dead by police after the siege.
They took five other hostage during the sick attack which left the 84-year-old priest dead, filming some of their depraved actions.
French President Francois Hollande spoke to the Pope after the horrific killing on Tuesday, praising those who had sent their condolences.
The pontiff referred to Father Jacques “a saintly priest”, but added he was but one of many innocent victims.
The 79-year-old continued: “[it is] not a war of religion. There is a war of interests. There is a war for money. There is a war for natural resources. There is a war for domination of peoples. This is the war.
“All religions want peace. Others want war.”
His remarks come after five separate attacks across Germany in the past few weeks were blamed on terrorism, killing at least 12 people and injuring dozens more.
And in neighbouring country France 84 people were mowed down when a Tunisian-born man drove a 19-tonne lorry in to a packed crowd celebrating national holiday on July 14.
The driver, 31-year-old Mohamed Bouhlel, was shot dead by police after his rampage.
France has been in a state of emergency since the deadly Paris attacks last November, in which 130 people lost their lives.
President Hollande had been planning to lift the state of emergency, but asked parliament to extend it for another three months in the wake of the Nice massacre.