World May 27, 2024 | 9:42 am

Pope Francis and President Luis Abinader met for 30 minutes at the Vatican

Rome.- Pope Francis held a 30-minute meeting at the Vatican with the recently re-elected president of the Dominican Republic, Luis Abinader, this Monday. During their meeting, President Abinader presented the pontiff with a silver rosary and a larimar, a semi-precious stone native to the Dominican Republic.

The meeting took place at the Apostolic Palace, beginning at 9:15 AM local time (7:15 GMT) and concluding at 9:45 AM (7:45 GMT), according to the Vatican.

After their private conversation, Pope Francis greeted the rest of the Dominican delegation, including the president’s wife, Raquel Arbaje, and their three daughters, Esther Patricia, Graciela Lucía, and Adriana Margarita. The presentation of gifts followed, with President Abinader giving the pope a rosary featuring a silver cord and larimar beads. Describing the rosary, Abinader noted, “Blue, with serene illuminated tones, with energy from the sky, from the sea, larimar radiates protection, confidence, and peace.” He also called the gift a “beautiful testimony of devotion to God and reverence for the Holy Father.”

Following the meeting with Pope Francis, the Dominican delegation met with Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Vatican’s Secretary of State, to discuss bilateral issues. The delegation then toured notable sites in Vatican City, including the Vatican Gardens and the Sistine Chapel.

While the details of the conversation between Pope Francis and President Abinader have not been disclosed, various social organizations had urged the president to invite the pope to visit the Dominican Republic for the 500th anniversaries of the Autonomous University of Santo Domingo (USAD) and the Primate Cathedral of America.

After his Vatican visit, President Abinader plans to meet with members of the Dominican community in Italy and will later be received by Italian President Sergio Mattarella at the Quirinal Palace. Abinader’s European tour will continue with a visit to Portugal. This tour was planned before his re-election, in which he won a new four-year term with 57.45% of the vote as the candidate of the Modern Revolutionary Party (PRM).

The 56-year-old economist secured over 2.5 million of the 4.4 million votes cast, achieving a decisive victory in the first round against three-time president Leonel Fernández of the Fuerza del Pueblo party and former president of the Chamber of Deputies Abel Martínez of the Dominican Liberation Party (PLD).

Source: EFE

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