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Egypt steps up security ahead of Pope's visit


Egyptian authorities have stepped up security across the country ahead of Pope Francis’ visit.

Security has been heightened in the area around the Vatican residence in Cairo and streets in the area have been cleared of cars and blocked off.

Pope Francis is hoping to mend ties with Islamic religious leaders just as Egypt’s ancient Christian community faces unprecedented pressure from Islamic State militants who have threatened to wipe it out.

His visit comes weeks after suicide attacks on two churches killed dozens of people.

During his two day visit, the pope is scheduled to meet with Egyptian President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi and also travel to Al-Azhar university and mosque, a key centre of Sunni Islamic learning.

This is the first papal trip to Cairo in 20 years.


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