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Vatican's daily paper suspends print edition

Italian soldiers patrol the area in front of an empty St. Peter's Square, at the Vatican, on March 22, 2020. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

VATICAN CITY (AP) -- The Vatican's daily newspaper is suspending its print edition as a result of the coronavirus-related shutdown.

    It is only the second time in its more than 150-year history that L'Osservatore Romano will cease printing starting Thursday. The other time was on Sept. 20, 1870, when Italian forces entered Rome in the final major push of the process to unify the Italian peninsula and defeat the Papal States.

    Editor-in-chief Andrea Monda says the newspaper's online edition will continue unchanged throughout the crisis, and the print edition will return as soon as possible. Italy, the European epicenter of the virus pandemic, has ordered all non-essential industry to shut in a bid to contain the virus.

    L'Osservatore Romano prints a daily edition in Italian and weekly or monthly editions in English, Spanish, French, German and Polish. The content skews heavily toward international news and features on religion and culture, though the daily also publishes papal speeches, decrees and appointments.

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