HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser Meets with Pope Francis

Vatican, June 04 – HH Sheikha Moza bint Nasser met here on Saturday with Pope Francis as part of a private audience at the Vatican City.

Talks during the meeting dealt with a host of topics of mutual interest,with a focus on the current refugee crisis and providing quality education in conflict zones, in addition to the importance of inter-faith dialogue between the Muslim and Christian faiths in order to address issues and problems in the world.

Her Highness expressed her gratitude to Pope Francis for his outspoken support and commitment to refugees, noting that he had inspired people across the world through both his words and deeds. She affirmed how his message of unity and hand of friendship to all peoples and faiths is more important now than ever.

In return, Pope Francis expressed his appreciation for Her Highness’s work through the Education Above All foundation, which provides access to education for millions of out of school children around the world.

In their discussions, HH Sheikha Moza cited statistics showing that between 2009 and 2012 there were at least 30 countries that were heavily affected by attacks on schools. Pope Francis stated that he was aware of the gravity of the situation, and stressed that every person in conflict areas should to be protected, particularly children and therefore schools.

After her meeting with Pope Francis, Her Highness witnessed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Qatar National Library and the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana to digitise and make publicly available a range of invaluable Arabic and Islamic manuscripts, which are held in the collection of the Biblioteca Apostolica Vaticana.