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World celebrations for new Pope

Newly elected Pope Francis is expected to visit his predecessor Benedict XVI at the papal retreat in Castel Gandolfo in his first full day as leader of the Roman Catholic Church.

World leaders are sending their congratulations and Catholics around the world are celebrating new Pope election that took place yesterday, March 13.

The Vatican announced the election of the Argentinian cardinal Jorge Bergoglio to the papacy, making him the first pontiff from the Americas.

UK prime minister, David Cameron, wrote on Twitter: "A momentous day for the 1.2bn Catholics around the world as His Holiness Pope Francis I is appointed the 266th Bishop of Rome."

US president, Barack Obama, said: "On behalf of the American people, Michelle and I offer our warm wishes to His Holiness Pope Francis as he ascends to the chair of St Peter and begins his papacy.”

The European Union leaders Herman Van Rompuy and Jose Manuel Barroso wished the new Catholic leader "a long and blessed pontificate".

The biggest celebration was in Latin America, where people cheered and cried at the news of first pope from Latin America election. Communist Cuba cheered as church bells rang to celebrate the news.

The UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, said: "I offer my heartfelt congratulations to Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio of Buenos Aires, Argentina, who has taken the name Pope Francis on his assumption of the papacy, and to all Catholics across the world on this momentous occasion.

On Twitter, the pope's account was restored and read: "Habemus Papam Franciscum," which translates to: "We have Pope Francis."

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