Pope slams 'atrocious, inhuman' persecution of Christians
Pope Francis urged the international community not to "assist mutely" in the persecution of Christians and minorities (AFP)

Pope Francis on Thursday slammed the "atrocious, inhuman and inexplicable" persecution of Christians and minorities, urging the international community not to remain silent.

"May global public opinion be ever more attentive, sensitive and active faced with the persecutions carried out against Christians, and more generally, against religious minorities," the pontiff said in a message to the Jordanian Catholic Church.

He denounced "the atrocious, inhuman and inexplicable persecution of those in many parts of the world... who are victims of fanaticism and intolerance."

"I renew my hope that the international community will not assist mutely and inertly to such an unacceptable crime," he said in the message, which will be delivered to the Jordanian Church by the secretary of the Italian Bishops' Conference, Nunzio Galantino.

Galantino will be in Jordon from Thursday to Sunday to deliver aid provided by the Italian church for the country's refugees.

Jordon sits on the front line of a refugee crisis in Syria, where millions of people have been displaced by the war.

According to the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, as of June there were 629,000 registered Syrian refugees in Jordan, most of whom live outside refugee camps.