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Thousands attend Pope's blessing

Pope Benedict XVI blessed the faithful from his window overlooking St Peter's Square for the first time since announcing his resignation, cheered by an emotional crowd of tens of thousands of well-wishers from around the world.

Pope Benedict triumphantly raised his arms outstretched to the crowd in his second-to-last Angelus blessing before leaving the papacy. A huge banner in the square read: "We love you."

The Sunday appointment is one of the most cherished traditions of the Catholic Church, and this moment is one of Pope Benedict's last opportunities to connect with the Catholic masses.

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