First Published: 2017-03-18

Pope to visit Egypt in April says Vatican
Pope Francis will visit Cairo April 28-29, accepting longstanding invitation issued by Egypt’s President.
Middle East Online

Visit follows last May's meeting with grand Imam al-Tayeb

VATICAN CITY - Pope Francis will visit Cairo on April 28-29 at the invitation of the Egyptian president and the grand imam of the capital's famed Al-Azhar mosque, the Vatican said Saturday.

The pontiff had hosted the grand imam, Ahmed al-Tayeb, at the Vatican last May, in a landmark meeting with one of Islam's top clerics.

That encounter was the culmination of a steady improvement in a relationship that had broken down because of a series of spats under Francis's predecessor Benedict XVI.

The current pope has made interfaith dialogue and reconciliation a leading theme of his pontificate and has also overseen an improvement in relations with the Orthodox and Protestant wings of Christianity.

The Argentine pope has a long-standing invitation to visit Egypt, issued by President President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi when he met Francis at the Vatican in 2014

 

Erdogan urges world to recognise Jerusalem as Palestinian capital

Gulf pours funds into West Africa anti-jihadist force

US skeptical about Putin's declaration of military victory in Syria

US-led air strikes kill 23 civilians in Syria

Saudi Arabia lifts decades-long ban on cinemas

Lebanon approves bid for oil, gas exploration

US to present 'irrefutable evidence' of Iran violations

Istanbul 'to remove Gulen links' from street names

Iraq hangs 38 jihadists

Pence to visit Middle East despite controversy

Hamas chief calls for continued Jerusalem protests

EU to repatriate 15,000 migrants from Libya in two months

Syria Kurds fear US ally will desert them after IS defeat

Israeli drugmaker Teva to cut 14,000 jobs over two years

Turkey rescues 51 migrants stranded on rocks

Saudi, UAE hold talks with Yemen Islamists

18 killed after bomber strikes Mogadishu police academy

Israeli air strikes target Hamas military facilities

Israel union calls nationwide strike over pharmaceutical giant job cuts

UN envoy urges Putin to press Assad for elections

Yemen's Huthi rebels release pro-Saleh media staff

Israel intelligence minister invites Saudi prince to visit

Saudi-led strikes kill 30 in rebel-run Yemen prison

Saudi king says Palestinians have 'right' to Jerusalem

Saudi King says determined to confront corruption

South Sudan needs $1.7 billion humanitarian aid in 2018

UAE oil giant floats 10 percent of retail arm to strong interest

Growing concern about rise of far-right in Austria

Saudi, UAE seeks to help West Africa fight terrorism

Somali journalist dies after Mogadishu bombing

Israeli sentenced to four years for arson attack on church

Erdogan risks sabotaging fragile relations with Israel

6.2-magnitude earthquake strikes Iran

Two Gazans killed by Israeli ‘strike’, Israel denies claim

French FM accuses Iran of carving out ‘axis’ of influence

Over 170 dead after South Sudan rival cattle herders clash

Russia begins partial withdrawal from Syria

Russia weary of returning IS jihadists before World Cup, election

EU accused of complicity in Libya migrant rights violations

Pentagon skeptical about Russia's Syria pullout claims

EU says Syria war ‘ongoing’ despite Russia pullout

Istanbul nightclub gunman refuses to testify

Integrating Syrians in Turkey carries implications

US opinion views Muslims and Arabs more favourably but political affiliation makes a difference

Iranian conservative protesters say Trump hastening end of Israel