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A 51-year-old man doused himself with gasoline and set himself on fire in St. Peter’s Square on Thursday.
[/caption]Man sets himself on fire at Vatican Vatican Says Man Set Himself on Fire.
A 51 year old man set himself on fire Thursday at St. Peter's Square in the Vatican. According to the Christian Today website, the man walked into the square and used a cigarette lighter to set fire to his clothing. Although closed circuit cameras didn't show it, sources believe that he apparently doused himself with a flammable liquid before he arrived at the square.
An official statement from the Vatican says that a passing Jesuit priest came to help and used his coat to douse the flames, after which Vatican police arrived with fire extinguishers. The man was then taken for treatment with serious burns over the upper part of his body. The priest and police officers were treated for burns to their hands and smoke inhalation. T he mans identity has not yet been released.
At this point there is no indication of what the mans motive could have been for setting himself on fire. Apparently a note with the address of his daughter was found nearby.
Vatican police refused to let reporters into the square after the incident.
According to the BBC Online, this is not the first such incident at the Vatican; in 1998 a man burned himself to death in a protest regarding the church's position on Homosexuality.
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