VATICAN CITY, 11 JUL 2009 (VIS) - Given below is the text of a communique released yesterday afternoon by the Holy See Press Office:
"This afternoon, Friday 10 July, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI received in audience Barack H. Obama, president of the United States of America. Prior to the audience, the president met Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B., and Archbishop Dominique Mamberti, secretary for Relations with States.
"In the course of their cordial exchanges the conversation turned first of all to questions which are in the interests of all and which constitute a great challenge for the future of every nation and for the true progress of peoples, such as the defence and promotion of life and the right to abide by one's conscience.
"Reference was also made to immigration with particular attention to the matter of reuniting families.
"The meeting focused as well upon matters of international politics, especially in light of the outcome of the G8 Summit. The conversation also dealt with the peace process in the Middle East, on which there was general agreement, and with other regional situations. Certain current issues were then considered, such as dialogue between cultures and religions, the global economic crisis and its ethical implications, food security, development aid especially for Africa and Latin America, and the problem of drug trafficking. Finally, the importance of educating young people everywhere in the value of tolerance was highlighted".
OP/AUDIENCE PRESIDENT/U.S.A.:OBAMA VIS 20090713 (250)