Posted by Edward Pentin
Tuesday, May 19, 2009 9:04 AM
The White House disclosed over the weekend that President Barack Obama is to make a weeklong foreign tour in July that will include Russia, Italy and Ghana. However, noticeably missing from the list is the Vatican.
It’s been widely thought that Obama would visit Pope Benedict XVI when the president attends the G8 summit in the Italian town of L’Aquila July 8-10. But there was no mention of the Holy Father or the Holy See in the statement, despite the fact that, according to sources in Rome, the president will be staying at the residence of the U.S. ambassador to Italy in Rome.
The White House says the reason is because the precise details of his tour have yet to be worked out. “We won’t go into the details of who he’s meeting and the places he’ll be visiting until nearer the time,” said a spokesman, adding that the president’s “primary purpose” for coming to Italy is the G8 summit. “I imagine as we get substantially closer to the date, we’ll have more details...”