"The winds of war are still blowing and the unsettling news about the risk of a possible humanitarian catastrophe in the province of Idlib are coming. I urge once again all the international community and all the parties involved to make use of the instruments of diplomacy, dialogue and negotiations, in compliance with the international humanitarian law and to safeguard the lives of civilians," the Pope said at the Angelus.
The situation in Idlib has escalated over the past week amid the recent reports of a potential government offensive after Russia said it had evidence that terrorists in Idlib were preparing a false-flag chemical weapons attack to frame the government forces and spark a US-led military intervention.
Syrian foreign minister Walid Muallem said on August 30 that government forces would "go all the way" in Idlib and that Damascus's main targets were terrorists.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said earlier in the week that talks were underway to create humanitarian corridors in Idlib to allow civilians leave the province.