Vatican: Pope's head bump in Mexico not a factor in resigning

Pope Benedict XVI fell and hit his head during a nighttime awakening in an unfamiliar Mexican hotel, Italian media says. The Vatican denies the injury affected the pontiff's decision to resign.

VATICAN CITY  — The Vatican says Pope Benedict XVI hit his head during his March 2012 trip to Mexico but denies it had any "relevant" role in his resignation.

Italy's La Stampa newspaper reported Thursday that Benedict hit his head and bled when he got up in the middle of the night in an unfamiliar bedroom in Leon, Mexico. The report said blood stained his hair and sheets.

Vatican spokesman the Rev. Federico Lombardi confirmed the incident Thursday but said "it was not relevant for the trip, in that it didn't affect it, nor in the decision" to resign.

The Vatican newspaper L'Osservatore Romano reported earlier in the week that Benedict had made the decision to resign after the Mexico-Cuba trip, which was physically exhausting for the 85-year-old pope.

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