Pope Francis will continue to travel without bulletproof vehicles or heavy security despite target of an attack as he wants to get close to people.
Unlike his predecessors, who used bulletproof popemobiles or limousines, Francis uses ordinary cars on international trips.
“I am aware of the risks involved,” he said in the introduction to a new book by Italian author Andrea Tornielli. “Maybe I’m reckless but I must say I don’t have any fear for myself but I’m always worried about the safety of those who travel with me and above all that of the people that I meet in various countries. There is always the risk of a rash gesture by a madman. But the Lord is always there,” he said.
The book, called “Travelling,” is about the 17 trips to more than 25 countries outside Italy that Francis has made since his election in 2013. He is expected to make as least two international trips this year, one to Portugal, and another to India and Bangladesh.
In Brazil in 2013, his small car was swamped after the driver took a wrong turn.
For the past two years, Italian police have notably increased security in the area around the Vatican, a sovereign state in the middle of Rome, following attacks by Islamist extremists in Europe.
But Francis still uses an ordinary blue Ford Focus when he visits parishes in Rome and insists on light, low-key security.