Arrangements under way for Pope visit to Jordan

01-12-2013 12:19 AM

Ammon News - AMMONNEWS - A Vatican official on Friday said arrangements are being made for a visit by Pope Francis to the holy lands next year, which will start from Jordan.

Following a meeting with Foreign Minister Nasser Judeh in Amman, Vatican Foreign Minister Archbishop Dominique Mamberti said that during his August visit to the Vatican, His Majesty King Abdullah invited the pontiff to visit the Kingdom.

He said “specific arrangements” are currently being looked into. It is expected that the visit will be next year and the Pope’s visit to the holy lands will start from Jordan, the Jordan News Agency, Petra, reported.

Judeh and the Vatican’s top diplomat reviewed the latest regional conditions and issues of joint concern during their meeting, the agency said.

Judeh said the meeting was in follow-up of the “important visit” by King Abdullah to the Vatican in August, his meeting with Pope Francis and the talks he held with the pontiff.

At his meeting with Vatican’s visiting foreign minister, Judeh stressed the Kingdom’s continued commitment to strengthening relations with the Vatican in a manner that fosters the values of love and harmony between the nations and achieves peace and stability for the people and the countries of the Middle East.

Discussions focused on political developments in the region, the Middle East peace process and Jordan’s position which asserts the need for establishing an independent viable and sovereign Palestinian state that lives in peace and security with its neighbours.

Judeh explained that Jordan is a “model of tolerance and co-existence” between the Christian and Muslim people, highlighting King Abdullah’s custodianship of Christian and Islamic sites and his role in safeguarding them and protecting the Christian residents of Jerusalem.

Stressing the strong diplomatic relations between Jordan and the Vatican, Mamberti underlined the importance of Jordan as a holy land and a country that respects religious pluralism, unity and harmony among all its people, not only to peace in the Arab region but also in the Middle East as a whole.

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