New York, US - UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has congratulated Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, who was elected the new Bishop of Rome on Wednesday evening and has taken the name Pope Francis I, as well as Catholics across the world.
“I look forward to continuing cooperation between the United Nations and the Holy See, under the wise leadership of His Holiness Pope Francis,” Ban said in a statement in New York.
'We share many common goals – from the promotion of peace, social justice and human rights, to the eradication of poverty and hunger – all core elements of sustainable development.'
“We also share the conviction that we can only resolve the interconnected challenges of today’s world through dialogue,' Ban said, adding: 'I am certain that His Holiness will continue to build on the legacy of his predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI, in the promotion of inter-faith dialogue which is at the heart of the Alliance of Civilizations initiative.'
The Argentine was elected the head of the world's 1.2 billion Catholics in the fifth round of ballot by Cardinals who gathered at the Sistine Chapel at the Vatican.
He becomes the first Pope from South America, which has the world's largest population of Catholics.