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Pope Praises Wartime Pope Pius XII
Staff and agencies
12 March, 2006

By NICOLE WINFIELD, Fri Mar 3, 2:11 PM ET

VATICAN CITY – Pope Benedict XVI praised the World War II-era pope, Pius XII, as a great pontiff but stopped short of endorsing his case for beatification, according to a transcript released Friday by the Vatican .

Pius, who reigned from 1939 to 1958 and was a Vatican diplomat in Germany and its secretary of state before that, has been criticized for not doing enough to save Jews from the Holocaust. His supporters say he made every effort to help Jews and other victims through diplomacy.