Lebanese President Michel Aoun is scheduled to visit the Vatican next week and meet with Pope Francis.
Aoun’s visit, scheduled for March 21, follows a visit to Lebanon by a papal delegation led by the Pope in early February. In March 2017, Aoun previously paid a visit to the Vatican.
The Lebanese ambassador to the Holy See, Farid Elias Khazen, announced the visit for next week.
“While the Holy See’s attention, like that of the rest of the world, is currently focused on the Ukraine conflict,” he said, the Vatican remains engaged in Lebanese affairs “at all levels.”
In May, Lebanon will hold parliamentary elections. Over 1,000 people have applied to run for office.
The country has a complicated political system that guarantees prominent positions to members of certain sects.
Presidents must be Maronites, Prime Ministers must be Sunni Muslims, and Parliament Speakers must be Shiite Muslims. The sectarian system developed as a result of Lebanon’s long history of inter-religious tensions, which culminated in the 1980s in a civil war.