Pontiff's family fled Italy to esape Fascists
The sister of Pope Francis has disclosed that their family fled Italy and emigrated to Argentina in the 1920s to escape the Fascist regime of Mussolini.
Maria Elena Bergoglio hit back at allegations that her brother may have colluded with the military junta in Argentina, saying that their family's escape from Italy had instilled in him a revulsion for military dictatorships.
Their parents, Mario, a railway worker, and Regina, emigrated from Piedmont in north-western Italy after Mussolini came to power in 1922.
"I remember my father often saying that the advent of the Fascist regime was the reason why he made up his mind to leave the country," Mrs Bergoglio (65), the only surviving sibling of the Pope, told La Stampa newspaper. (© Daily Telegraph, London)