Pope Francis plans to visit South Sudan

Pope Francis kneels to kiss the feet of South Sudan's President Salva Kiir Mayardit at the Pope's Santa Marta residence in the Vatican in April

Pope Francis has said he hopes to visit South Sudan next year in a follow up to the ecumenical spiritual retreat he held with the country’s top leaders in April.

In his weekly blessing at the Vatican on October 10, 2019 the Pope said that he hoped to visit Sudan next year to encourage peace and restoration after years of conflict.

Pope Francis kissed the feet of President Salva Kiir and rival Riek Machar at the Vatican as he urged them to pursue peace following the signing of the revitalized peace agreement in September 2018.

The conflict in South Sudan has seen both sides sign several peace pacts but are yet to reach a conclusive decision that can guarantee lasting peace to the young African nation.

The two leaders are expected to form a unity government in February 2020.



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