The 266th Pope Francis announced that he will soon visit Greece, Cyprus and Malta.
In an interview with Spanish radio station Radio Cope, he mentioned the countries he intends to visit in the future, noting that Greece is one of them.
“So far, small countries are my pick when it comes to traveling in Europe. The first state I visited was Albania. Now I have planned a trip to Slovakia and then to Greece, Cyprus and Malta, ”he said in today’s radio interview.
The Pope’s visit is expected to take place in the third week of November (another source says September). The main content of the visit will be the humanitarian situation with refugees and the discussion of Turkey’s position in relation to Greece (the intention to turn the Church of St. Sophia into a mosque), according to in.gr.
Recall that the President of the Republic of Greece, Ms. Sakellaropoulou, called the head of the Roman Catholic Church a few months ago, on the occasion of the events dedicated to the 200th anniversary of the Greek Revolution, as well as on the decision of the Turkish government and Tayyip Erdogan personally to turn Hagia Sophia into a mosque.
Ms Sakellaropulu then thanked the Pope for his support, asking him to use all his influence to raise awareness of the problem in the international community so that the Turkish leadership can reverse its decision and restore the Hagia Sophia as a protected monument: “This decision deeply hurts those who believe that this supreme symbol of Christianity belongs to humanity and the world cultural heritage, and pushes Turkey away from the values of a secular state and the principles of tolerance and pluralism, ”the President said.