President Biden met with Pope Francis at the Vatican after arriving in Rome for the G20 conference of world leader on Friday.
Biden “thanked His Holiness for his advocacy for the world’s poor and those suffering from hunger, conflict, and persecution,” according to the White House, and “lauded Pope Francis’ leadership in fighting the climate crisis” and also his advocacy for vaccine sharing and “an equitable global economic recovery.”
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Before meeting with French President Emmanuel Macron, Biden also met with Italian President Sergio Mattarella and Italian Prime Minister Mario Draghi.
This is the first face-to-face encounter between the leaders since a submarine incident between the US and Australia sparked diplomatic tensions between the two allies.
Biden’s meetings take place ahead of two major summits: the G20 in Rome and the Cop26 in Glasgow. In a rare interview with the BBC this morning, Pope Francis called for “radical decisions.”