President Anastasiades Discusses Cyprus Issue With Pope Francis in Vatican



Nicos Anastasiades (L), Pope Francis and Andri Anastasiades. Photo from Anastasiades’ Twitter account

The President of the Republic of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades met with Pope Francis in Vatican City on Monday.

Anastasiades, along with his wife Andri and a score of Cypriot officials, were welcomed by the leader of the Roman Catholic Church in his office.

The two leaders discussed the situation in Cyprus and the Pontiff showed particular knowledge of, as well as interest in, the consequences of the 1974 Turkish invasion of the island.

Anastasiades also invited Pope Francis to make an official visit to Cyprus, and the Catholic leader readily agreed to do so.

It was also made known that the official papal visit, on which the Cypriot government will place great emphasis, will take place sometime during 2020.

The Cypriot delegation also held various discussions with officials from the Vatican, including Pietro Parolin, the Prime Minister of the tiny but diplomatically powerful state.

Approximately one percent of the population in Cyprus is Catholic, most of whom are Maronites, one of the Eastern rites of Catholicism.