Francis’s trip to United Arab Emirates ‘to promote peace’ comes amid bloody conflict to south

Pope Francis will be the first pontiff to visit the Arabian peninsula, the birthplace of Islam, when he celebrates mass this week in front of an expected 120,000 people in Abu Dhabi.

The pope has been invited to visit the United Arab Emirates by Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan, the crown prince of Abu Dhabi, to take part in an international interfaith meeting as part of the Gulf state’s “year of tolerance”.

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