VATICAN CITY (AP) -- Pope John Paul II and the patriarch of Armenian Orthodox believers prayed together as part of efforts to move their churches closer, and agreed on a possible papal visit to the Caucasus mountain nation. The service in St. Peter's Basilica also included a call for peace in the Middle East.
Garegin II, leader of the Armenian Apostolic Church, made a four-day visit. The pope had hoped to visit Armenia last year but the trip was postponed due to the death of the previous patriarch, Garegin I.
A joint communique said the two leaders ''continue to pray for full and visible communion between us.''
The statement mentioned the ''Armenian genocide,'' a reference to 1915 killings of Armenians in Turkey.
Armenians say 1.5 million of their people were killed to force them out of eastern Turkey. Turkey says the death toll is inflated and that Armenians were killed or displaced to quell civil unrest.
There are about 10 million Armenians worldwide, most of them believed to be followers of the Armenian Apostolic Church.
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