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Abdel Salam: Pope’s visit to Iraq significant for entire Arab region
Pope Francis meeting Mohamed Mahmoud Abdel Salam in the Vatican in February 2019.04 March 2021. On the eve of Pope Francis' apostolic visit to Iraq, the secretary-general of the Higher Committee of Human Fraternity underscores the values of solidarity and coexistence emphasized by the Pope in his encyclical Fratelli tutti.

Vatican News

“His Holiness Pope Francis’s historic trip to ailing Iraq that has been suffering from wars, divisions, and terrorism for years, and the Pope’s insistence to support the Iraqi people despite the pandemic, constitute a clear sign of the humanitarian approach the Pope has adopted and to which he has dedicated his entire life.” This is the sentiment that Judge Mohamed Mahmoud Abdel Salam, the secretary-general of the Higher Committee of Human Fraternity, expresses in a statement he released on Thursday.  He makes his observation on the eve of the Pope’s 4-day apostolic journey to Iraq.  According to Abdel Salem, it is “a visit that represents a real incarnation of the principles included in the Document of Human Brotherhood and in the Encyclical Fratelli tutti"

A significant visit for the entire Arab region

The secretary-general of the High Committee points out that the entire programme of the Pope's visit and the list of places and cities he will go to, reflect his desire to communicate with all the Iraqi people. “It is undoubtedly a significant visit for our Arab region,” Abdel Salam points out, adding, “It carries several massages of solidarity with the victims of violence and terrorism and the promotion of values of fraternity and citizenship in Iraq and beyond.”

He notes that for a “great figure of peace and a leader who leads the world on the path to peace and coexistence” such as Pope Francis, such gestures are not unusual.