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Holy See confirms investigation of Order of Malta

January 17, 2017. The Holy See has issued a statement Tuesday in response to "attempts by the Order of Malta to discredit” the new group established by the Vatican to conduct the investigation of why the Chancellor of the Order of Malta was asked to step down.

Pope sends condolences for victims of Turkish cargo jet crash

January 16, 2017. On Monday morning, a Turkish cargo plane has tragically crashed in Kyrgyzstan, killing dozens and hospitalizing many others. Many homes and vehicles in the small village are also destroyed. As a result, Vatican Secretary of State, Pietro Parolin has sent a message of condolences to the victims of the disaster on behalf of Pope Francis.

Pope Francis to meet with Palestinian president on Saturday

January 11, 2017. Pope Francis will meet with Palestinian president, Mahmud Abbas on Saturday, January 14, at the Vatican to inaugurate the new Palestinian embassy to the Holy See.

Former Director of the Vatican's school for diplomats, Justo Mullor dies

December 30, 2016. The smiling archbishop Justo Mullor died this morning in Rome, at the Pío XI Clinic. He was 84 years old.

Jordan's King Abdallah II and Queen Rania discuss need for dialogue in Syria with Pope


Seemingly caught in the midst of the current Middle East crisis, Jordans King Abdullah II and his wife, Queen Rania, met with Pope Francis for a brief audience at the Vatican. The audience lasted about 20 minutes. Both leaders spoke about how to achieve peace and stability in the Middle East, but especially in Syria.   

They also addressed other matters, like the peace negotiations between Israel and Palestine, as well as the status of Jerusalem. 

Pope Francis and the Jordanian monarchs agreed that dialogue between all the factions of Syrian society, and with the support of the international community, is the only way to put an end to the violence. 

The audience was very cordial, and the Pope used the time to thank King Abdullah for his commitment to fostering inter-religious dialogue. The Jordanian king called a conference in September at his capital, Amman, about the challenges Christians face in the Middle East. 

Queen Rania attended the audience wearing a white veil, a privilege usually reserved for Catholic royals. 

This was the first meeting between the Jordanian monarchs and Pope Francis. Before then, in 2009, King Abdullah II and Queen Rania had welcomed Benedict XVI in Amman, during the Pope emeritus' apostolic trip to the Holy Land.