Pope Francis has said he will not live in the Vatican or return to Argentina, his native country, if he retires.

He said he would prefer to find a church in Rome where he could continue to confess.

Speaking to Spanish broadcaster TelevisaUnivision, Francis, 85, denied he plans to retire any time soon, but said “the door is open”.

Pope Benedict XVI resigned in 2013becoming the first pope to do so in 600 years.

Since then, he has lived in a monastery in Vatican City.

francis said the Vatican needed to better regulate Benedict’s role as pope emeritus – but having him on hand worked out well.

Some cardinals and canon lawyers have questioned Benedict XVI’s decisions on retirement, including his decision to continue wearing the white cassock of the papacy.

Another point of contention was Benedict, 95, refusing to revert to his birth name, Joseph Ratzinger.

Critics say these choices and the continued presence of Benedict XVI in the Vatican have caused confusion for Catholics and threaten the unity of the Church.

Traditionalists were able to use Benoît as a conservative reference when they were unhappy with Francis’ decisions, they say.

Francis described Benedict as a “holy and discreet man,” adding, “But in the future things should be more demarcated, or things should be made more explicit.”

The pope added: “I think for taking the first step after so many centuries, he gets 10 points. It’s a marvel.”

Francis said he would also step down if the time was right and would consider moving to the Basilica of St. John Lateran, which is the traditional seat of the bishop of Rome.

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He said he had an apartment in Buenos Aires where he could continue to confess at a nearby church and visit the sick in a hospital.

“That’s what I thought for Buenos Aires,” he said. “I think that scenario, if I survive until a resignation – it’s possible that I die before… I would like something like that.”

The pope asked about abortion

In a large interview, she was asked if Catholic politicians who support abortion rights should continue to receive the sacraments.

He said abortion was a matter of conscience that elected officials should deal with themselves.

Joe Biden and Nancy Pelosi have sparked a heated debate over whether they should criticize the US Supreme Court’s decision to strike down the right to access abortion, given that they are both Catholic.

The Catholic Church opposes abortion, but the US bishops have decided not to formally rebuke Mr Biden for supporting abortion rights.

“I leave it to his conscience and that he speaks to his bishop, his parish priest, his parish priest, about this inconsistency,” the pope said.

Ms Pelosi’s bishop, Archbishop of San Francisco Salvatore Cordileone, has banned her from receiving Communion in his archdiocese, despite having recently received Communion at a papal mass at St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican .

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