Pope Francis has declared that presidential candidate Donald Trump is not Christian because of views on immigration and his desire to build a wall on the Mexican border.

The Pope said, however, he did not want to advise American Catholics on whether or not to vote for Mr Trump.

The Reuters news agency said that in a conversation with reporters on his flight back from a visit to Mexico, Pope Francis was asked about Mr Trump and some of his statements, such as vowing to build a wall between the United States and Mexico if he becomes president.

“A person who thinks only about building walls, wherever they may be, and not building bridges, is not Christian,” the Pontiff said in answer to a specific question about mr Trump's views. “This is not in the gospel.”

Asked if American Catholics should vote for someone with Mr Trump's views, Francis said:

“I am not going to get involved in that. I say only that this man is not Christian if he has said things like that. We must see if he said things in that way and in this I give the benefit of the doubt.”

Courtesy The Independent