Netanyahu unlikely to meet Pope Francis in the Vatican

By
October 20, 2013 21:32

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu is unlikely to meet Pope Francis when he travels to Italy this week.

His office had initially announced that such a meeting would take place on Tuesday or Wednesday.

But on Sunday, an Israeli official clarified that the notice had gone out before the meeting was confirmed.

Pope Francis, who was ordained in March of this year, met in the Vatican with Israel's President Shimon Peres in April and with Knesset speaker Yuli Edelstein earlier this month.

The pontiff did grant an audience to Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas last Thursday.

Both Peres and Abbas have invited the pontiff to visit the Holy Land. Pope Francis had already told Peres he wanted to come to Jerusalem but no date has been set for such a visit.

Netanyahu heads to Rome this week, where he will meet with Italian Prime Minister Enrico Letta on Tuesday and with US Secretary of State John Kerry on Wednesday.


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