Aoun salutes Pope Francis’ historic visit to UAE

President of the Republic, Michel Aoun, on Monday hailed the historic visit of Pope Francis to the United Arab Emirates, which comes within the framework of the Pontiff’s concern to promote dialogue and communication among the various religions, cultures and beliefs, especially with Islam.

President Aoun said inter-faith dialogue and communication will help remove the distorted image caused by extremism and terrorism which take of Islam as a cover.

Aoun expressed confidence that this visit will contribute to furthering more humane, more open and more respectful relations between the countries of the Levant, especially the Gulf countries and the European countries.

He underlined that Lebanon, through the essence of its existence, is entitled to be a land for the meeting of monotheistic religions, and a model country for coexistence, dialogue and cultural richness.

The President stressed that his recent call made at the United Nations to establish a “human academy for rapprochement and dialogue” is consistent with the message of Lebanon and its role in the region and the world.

In addition, the Head of State met at the Baabda Palace with the Bishop of the Maronite Diocese of Jbeil, Bishop Michel Aoun, who invited him to the annual dinner of the Fraternity Association in Lebanon, February 15, under the patronage of the Maronite Patriarch, Bechara Boutros Rahi.

The President expressed surprise for the criticisms leveled against the new government even before beginning its work.

“Our work shall focus on three main issues: the economic situation, the issue of the displaced people and the fight against corruption,” he said.

On another level, Aoun received the Ambassador of the Sovereign Order of Malta to Lebanon, Charles-Henri of Aragon, who came on the occasion of the end of his diplomatic mission in Lebanon.

Aoun hailed the efforts of the Ambassador during his stay in Beirut and the achievements of the Embassy, granting him a high ranking cedar citation as a token of appreciation.

The ambassador expressed appreciation of the President’s recognition initiative, hailing his efforts in guiding Lebanon towards the safety shores.

Source: National News Agency