Pope Francis has announced that he has to postpone his visits to Russia and Ukraine because of knee problems.

Pope Francis said he could not visit the cities of Moscow and Kiev until after a meeting of religious leaders in Kazakhstan in mid-September, according to Sky News.

The Pope claims that the doctor forbade him to travel because of a knee problem, the sovereign pontiff told CNN Portugal.

Visit to Russia, postponed by the Pope

Pope Francis previously announced that he plans to visit Ukraine and Russia to promote dialogue between the two countries.

“Now I cannot go because, after the trip to Canada, there was a small setback with the recovery of the knee and the doctor forbade me, saying: Before Kazakhstan you cannot travel,” explained Pope Francis.

The Sovereign Pontiff prays for Ukraine

The Pope revealed that he is talking on the phone about the situation in Ukraine.

“But we kept in touch by phone… Between all of us, something could be done. I follow (the situation) with my pain and prayers. But the situation is truly tragic. I always believe that, having a dialogue, we advance”, said Pope Francis.

The Pope has spoken several times about the war in Ukraine.

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