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  Tuesday, January 26, 2021
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United States President George W. Bush met with Pope Benedict
United States President George W. Bush met with Pope Benedict XVI in the Vatican on Friday, two months after the pontiff's trip to Washington.

The meeting came amid tight security, with a large police presence in the city state and several streets closed off. The previous day, Bush was confronted by crowds of anti-war protesters in Rome before his audience with Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi.

The U.S. leader and the German-born head of the Roman Catholic Church share views on several issues, including their opposition to abortion, gay marriages and stem cell research. However, the pope opposed the U.S. invasion of Iraq.

After private talks, the pope and Bush held prayers in the Vatican Gardens.

Bush's visit to the Vatican is part of a European tour, his last as U.S. president, focused on garnering support for measures to stop Iran from obtaining nuclear weapons, and to develop democracy in the Middle East.


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