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Queen Elizabeth to meet Pope Francis in Rome

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Queen Elizabeth to meet Pope Francis in Rome
File photo: Andrew Yates/AFP
11:30 CET+01:00
Britain's Queen Elizabeth II is to visit Rome in April, where she and husband Prince Philip will meet President Giorgio Napolitano and Pope Francis.

The visit, which will take place on 3rd April, follows the cancellation of a visit last March after the Queen fell ill. A statement from Buckingham Palace said that the monarch had been invited by President Napolitano. It was not stated whether the trip would have the status of a state visit.

The Queen, who came to the throne in 1952, has made three state visits to Italy - in 1961, 1980 and 2000. Each of these has included a visit to the Vatican. 

The announcement of the visit follows news that she will make a state visit to France in April to attend commemorations of the seventieth anniversary of the Normandy landings. It follows speculation that the monarch, who turns 88 on April 21st and Prince Philip, 92, would be cutting back on foreign travel due to old age.

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