Turk who shot John Paul II lays flowers on tomb in St. Peter’s Basilica in surprise visit

FILE – In this Thursday, Nov. 27, 2014 file photo Mehmet Ali Agca, the man who shot Pope John Paul II in May 1981, speaks during a press conference in Istanbul, Turkey. The Vatican says the Turk who shot and wounded John Paul II in 1981 has laid flowers on the saint’s tomb in St. Peter’s Basilica, Saturday, Dec. 27, 2014. A Vatican spokesman, the Rev. Ciro Benedettini, said the surprise visit Saturday by Mehmet Ali Agca lasted a few minutes. As with other flowers left by visitors to the tomb, the white blossoms were later removed by basilica workers. John Paul visited the incarcerated Agca in 1983 and later intervened with Italian authorities to gain Agca’s release in 2000 from the Italian prison where he was serving a life sentence for the assassination attempt in St. Peter’s Square. (AP Photo) (The Associated Press)

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