This is the moment two doves released by Pope Francis as a gesture of peace were attacked in Rome.
Tens of thousands of people had gathered in St Peter’s Square in the Vatican on Sunday to watch as the white doves were set free from an open window of the Apostolic Palace.
However soon after being launched into the air a seagull and a large black crow launched their attack.
See the photos below:
One dove escaped the gull’s clutches after losing a bunch of feathers in the mid-air struggle while the black crow repeatedly pecked at the other dove.
It was not clear what happened to the doves as they soared away into the air.
The symbolic gesture was part of the Vatican’s annual Caravan of Peace event which takes place on the last Sunday of January.
An almost identical incident occurred last year at the very same event when a single gull attacked the two doves.
On that occasion the birds quickly flew back into the palace after the gull began its attack.