New pope elected

2013-03-13 20:12
White smoke emerges from the chimney on the roof of the Sistine Chapel, in St Peter's Square at the Vatican. (Gregorio Borgia, AP)

White smoke emerges from the chimney on the roof of the Sistine Chapel, in St Peter's Square at the Vatican. (Gregorio Borgia, AP)

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Vatican City - White smoke rose from the Vatican's Sistine Chapel on Wednesday signaling cardinals had elected a new pope to succeed Benedict and take charge of the troubled Roman Catholic Church.

At the same time the bells of St Peter's pealed.

The election, on the first full day of voting by the 115 cardinals, came more quickly than many had expected after no obvious front runner had emerged following the surprise abdication of Benedict last month.

The identity of the new pope will be announced to the world from the central balcony of St Peter's Basilica within an hour.

The new pope is expected to be introduced to the world in the next hour.

Read more on:    pope francis  |  vatican city  |  religion

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