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Rome Reports

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King of Jordan travels to Vatican to speak with Pope Francis about Jerusalem

It's the greeting of two long-time friends. King Abdullah II of Jordan visited Pope Francis again at the Vatican. This time, the encounter had a sole motive that concerns the Holy See as well as the Middle East – the United States' unilateral decision to recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. 

“I've forgotten my English. I need a translator.”

Despite the gravity of the issue, the king, accompanied by his main collaborator, and the pope held a relaxed conversation. The Hashemite king even invited the Holy Father to visit Jordan again. 

During the exchange of gifts, King Abdullah presented the pope with a very symbolic token – an image showing Jerusalem's main holy places. 

He also gave Pope Francis a present that brought back fond memories. 

“I still remember when I went to Jordan and I remembered your father when Paul VI went there.”

For his part, the pope gave the king a plaque engraved with the words “the desert will become a garden” and the principal documents from his papacy. 

Throughout the meeting, both men agreed on the importance of preserving the Holy City's status quo as a key element for the region's peace and stability.