Pope Francis will visit Georgia in late September, the Vatican has confirmed.
The visit will be part of the Pope’s Caucasus tour, which will involve Azerbaijan and Armenia too.
"Accepting the invitations from His Holiness and Beatitude Ilia II, Catholicos Patriarch of All Georgia, and the civil and religious authorities of Georgia and Azerbaijan, the Holy Father will complete his apostolic trip in the Caucasus, visiting [Azerbaijan and Georgia] from 30 September to 2 October, 2016,” the Vatican press office said.
In the same announcement the Holy See Press Office said Pope Francis would also visit Armenia in June 2016. The visit was scheduled for 24-26 of June.
The Administration of Georgia’s President welcomed the visit and said it was important not only for its religious meaning.
"The Vatican plays an important role in international relations and this is state relations with which is particularly important for us regarding promoting Georgia in the Catholic world and supporting the non-recognition policy of the occupied regions,” the President’s press office said in a statement.
This will be the second time a Pope has visited Georgia. Pope John Paul II visited Tbilisi in 1999.