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HomeNewsPope Francis to begin 1st-ever Iraq visit

Pope Francis to begin 1st-ever Iraq visit

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Vatican City, March 5 : Pope Francis is set to embark on the first ever papal visit to Iraq on Friday, despite the raging coronavirus pandemic and security concerns in the Middle Eastern country, it was reported on Friday.
Francis’ trip comes 22 years after Pope John Paul II cancelled a visit in 1999 after talks with the government of then-President Saddam Hussein’s broke down.
According to a BBC report, the 84-year-old head of the Catholic Church will be greeted by welcomed by Prime Minister Mustafa Al-Kadhimi and President Barham Salih upon his arrival in Baghdad.
After this, he will meet bishops and other clergy Our Lady of Salvation, a Syriac Catholic church in the capital city.
On Saturday, he will arrive at the city of Najaf, where he will visit Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani, the leading spiritual leader of Iraqi Shia Muslims and one of the most senior clerics in Shia Islam.
Pope Francis will also participate in an inter-religious meeting at the ancient site of Ur, traditionally believed to be the birthplace of the Prophet Abraham.

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