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Russia looms in background as pope travels to Baltics

Sep 21, 2018 - Associated Press

VATICAN CITY (AP) - Pope Francis is heading to the Baltic countries this weekend amid renewed alarm about Russia's intentions in the region it twice occupied for decades.

Francis' 25th foreign visit comes a quarter of a century after St. John Paul II made the first papal visit to the former Soviet Union and cheered as Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia emerged from five decades of Soviet-imposed religious repression and state-sponsored atheism.

Hopes were high back in 1993 - the last Russ...