Bizarre claim Pope will die within year sparks media storm

Posted on February 11, 2012

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CLAIMS of a bizarre plot to assassinate Pope Benedict XVI are reverberating through Italy in what observers say signals the latest twist in an increasingly cutthroat internal Vatican power dispute.

The Italian daily Il Fatto Quotidiano published the sensational ”mordkomplott” letter detailing an alleged plot against the Pope on its front page on Friday. Despite a Vatican spokesman claiming it was ”nonsense – not to be taken seriously”, the content of the anonymous warning letter, dated December 30, 2011, was reported widely in Italian and German media.

The letter was delivered in early January to the Vatican Secretary of State, Tarcisio Bertone, and the Pope’s private secretary, Georg Ganswein, by Cardinal Dario Castrillon Hoyos of Colombia, according to Il Fatto Quotidiano.

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