March 18 (UPI) — Pope Francis has planned an official visit to Egypt in April to meet with President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and visit Cairo’s Al Azhar mosque to meet with Grand Imam Ahmed El-Tayyeb, officials said Saturday.
“Egypt welcomes its valued guest, and affirms that it is looking forward to this visit as a message of peace, tolerance and dialogue between all mankind from all religions,” Sisi said.
The meeting comes after years of tension that developed under Pope Benedict XVI.
Shortly after the announcement, the pope tweeted, “I invite you not to build walls but bridges, to conquer evil with good, offence with forgiveness, to live in peace with everyone.”
I invite you not to build walls but bridges, to conquer evil with good, offence with forgiveness, to live in peace with everyone.
— Pope Francis (@Pontifex) March 18, 2017