January 13 2017
Abbas meeting with Pope Francis ahead of historic meeting of the UN. There is a lot of activity in the middle east, heads up!
From Israeli News Live
Pope Francis described Mahmoud Abbas as ‘angel of peace’ during previous meeting
The Pope is preparing to host the Palestinian president at the Vatican for the third time, two years on from the president’s last visit.
It is not currently known what they will discuss; Italian foreign minister Angelino Alfano will also meet with the president on the same day.
The pontiff has met President Abbas on two previous occasions: once during a trip to the Holy Land in 2014, and once during the Palestinian leader’s only other Vatican visit the following year.
It is believed a Palestinian embassy will be established in the Vatican at some point this year. An accord was signed two years ago in which the Pope and clergy officially recognised the Palestinian state.
Tensions between the Vatican and Israel have been high since the signing of the accord, and suffered further strain when Pope Francis described Mr Abbas as an “angel of peace” during a previous meeting.