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Pope Francis condemns 'senseless hatred' of US gay club massacre

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Vatican City (AFP)

Pope Francis on Sunday condemned as "homicidal folly and senseless hatred" a massacre at a gay nightclub in the US in which at least 50 people died.

The attack "has caused in Pope Francis, and in all of us, the deepest feelings of horror and condemnation... before this new manifestation of homicidal folly and senseless hatred", said a statement from the Holy See.

The attack in which a gunman opened fire at the packed nightclub in Orlando, Florida, is the worst mass shooting in US history.

"We all hope that ways may be found, as soon as possible, to effectively identify and contrast the causes of such terrible and absurd violence," the Holy See statement added.

The FBI said they were investigating the possible radical Islamic "leanings" of the suspect, identified by US media as 29-year-old Omar Mateen, a US citizen of Afghan descent.

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