Mexican Leader and Pope Discuss Emigration

Also Consider Drug Trafficking and Indigenous Peoples

VATICAN CITY, JUNE 4, 2007 ( Benedict XVI received in audience the president of Mexico and discussed emigration, indigenous peoples, and the battle against violence and drug trafficking.

The Pope and the Mexican leader spoke of these issues today during Calderon’s first visit to the Vatican as president. The president renewed an invitation to the Holy Father to visit Mexico.

Alter speaking in Spanish privately with the Pontiff in his library for 22 minutes, Felipe Calderón met with Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, Vatican secretary of state, and Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, secretary for Relations with States.

According to a communiqué released by the Vatican press office: “The position of the Catholic Church was also examined, above all in light of the important steps forward — already taken or yet to be taken — in its relations with the state.

“In this context, special mention was made of the fact that this year marks the happy occasion of the 15th anniversary of the re-establishment of diplomatic relations between Mexico and the Holy See.”

The Mexican president and Benedict XVI also discussed the upcoming Group of Eight summit to be held in Germany.

“The cordial discussions provided an occasion for an exchange of views on questions concerning the current international situation, also with a view to the forthcoming G-8 summit meeting, in which President Calderón will participate as a special guest,” the communiqué said.

The president came with his wife Margarita Zavala and their three children.

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