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Wind blows Pope Francis' mantle as he delivers his speech at Bandaranaike International Airport in Katunayake, Sri Lanka, on Jan. 13, 2015  Ishara S. Kodikara—AFP/Getty Images

Pope Francis Speaks Out on Charlie Hebdo: 'One Cannot Make Fun of Faith'

Jan 15, 2015

For Pope Francis, there are limits to free speech.

The Holy Father spoke to journalists in a broad interview on the papal flight to the Philippines about the Charlie Hebdo massacre and the controversy about the magazine's new cover this week. Religious freedom and freedom of expression, he said, are fundamental human rights. But they are also not a total liberties. "There is a limit," he said, speaking in Italian. "Every religion has its dignity. I cannot mock a religion that respects human life and the human person."

The Pope also condemned the Paris violence. "One cannot offend, make war, kill in the name of one’s own religion, that is, in the name of God," Francis said. "To kill in the name of God is an aberration."

Masses Mourn Paris Terror Victims in France and Israel

Police officers carry the coffins draped in the French flag of the three police officers killed in the recent Islamist attacks in a ceremony to posthumously decorate them with the Légion d’Honneur at the Invalides in Paris, on Jan. 13, 2015.
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Police officers carry the flag-draped coffins of three police officers killed in the recent terror attacks during a ceremony to posthumously decorate them with the Légion d’Honneur at the Invalides in Paris, France, on Jan. 13, 2015.Patrick Kovarik—AFP/Getty Images
Police officers carry the coffins draped in the French flag of the three police officers killed in the recent Islamist attacks in a ceremony to posthumously decorate them with the Légion d’Honneur at the Invalides in Paris, on Jan. 13, 2015.
Police Officers line up at the funeral of murdered police officer Ahmed Merabet during the burial at a muslim cemetery on Jan. 13, 2015 in Bobigny, France.
The funeral of murdered police officer Ahmed Merabet takes place at a muslim cemetery on Jan. 13, 2015 in Bobigny, France.
Police Officers participate in the burial of murdered police officer Ahmed Merabet at a muslim cemetery on Jan. 13, 2015 in Bobigny, France.
A female mourner reacts during the funeral of murdered police officer Ahmed Merabet at Bobigny Muslim cemetery on Jan. 13, 2015 in Bobigny, France.
Family members of police officer Ahmed Merabet hold his cap and his Legion of Honor decoration during his funeral at a muslim cemetery on Jan. 13, 2015 in Bobigny, France.
Family and relatives of French Jew Yoav Hattab, a victim of the attack on a kosher grocery store in Paris, gather around a symbolic coffin for his funeral procession in the city of Bnei Brak near Tel Aviv, Israel, Jan. 13, 2015.
An Ultra-orthodox Jewish man prays at a Jerusalem cemetery on Jan. 13, 2015, as he attends the funeral of four Jews killed in an Islamist attack on a kosher supermarket in Paris last week.
Crowds mourn during the funeral of the four Jews killed in the Paris kosher supermarket, Yoav Hattab, Yohan Cohen, Francois-Michel Saada and Phillipe Braham, in Jerusalem, Jan. 13, 2015.
The body of a victim is carried to be buried at a cemetery in Jerusalem on Jan. 13, 2015 during the funeral of four Jews killed in an Islamist attack on a kosher supermarket in Paris last week.
Mourners react in Jerusalem on Jan. 13, 2015 during the funeral of four Jews killed in an Islamist attack on a kosher supermarket in Paris last week.
An ultra-Orthodox Jewish man walks in a cemetery during the funeral of four French Jewish victims of the attack last week on a kosher grocery store in Paris, in Jerusalem, Jan. 13, 2015.
Police officers carry the flag-draped coffins of three police officers killed in the recent terror attacks during a cere
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He broke it down in everyday terms, something that is coming to be known as classic Francis teaching style. “If [a close friend] says a swear word against my mother, he’s going to get a punch in the nose," he explained. "One cannot provoke, one cannot insult other people’s faith, one cannot make fun of faith."

His words come as he leaves Sri Lanka, on a trip that focused on interreligious harmony and inclusion. The Pope made an impromptu visit to a Buddhist temple, home of the Buddhist monk Banagala Upatissa, and he paused to listen and meditate as the monk offered a prayer. That move, along with his comments on the plane, again show his interest in interfaith engagement.

Twelve people were killed last week at the Charlie Hebdo headquarters in Paris. The satirical magazine was known for its controversial cartoons featuring the Prophet Muhammad.

TIME's new cover, "After Paris: Lessons From the Attacks" is out today.

Read next: Charlie Hebdo Is Giving Us a Lesson in Humanity

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