President Barroso meets Pope Francis at the Vatican
President Barroso met today Pope Francis at a private audience, an opportunity to discuss common interests, in particular the initiatives to overcome the economic crisis in Europe. The President also met Pope Francis at an appointment in March.
During the meeting, President Barroso expressed the EU's strong commitment to overcome the current crisis, to fight poverty and to promote solidarity. The social investment package and the latest initiatives to combat youth unemployment were also on the agenda.
The EU's engagement in both conflict resolution and in humanitarian support was also discussed. In particular, President Barroso presented the EU's involvement in Syria, where the EU leads the efforts of the international community, contributing more than € 840 million. Recently, the Commission announced a € 400 million additional package of humanitarian and non-humanitarian assistance to Syria and neighbouring countries.
The European Commission promotes a regular dialogue with representatives of religions and non-religious about the future of Europe, citizenship and social policy.