In her final days before she leaves office, President Marie-Louise Coleiro Preca was received in audience by Pope Francis at the Vatican.
The President of Malta, who subsequently met with His Eminence Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, accompanied by the Rev. Msgr. Antoine Camilleri, under-secretary for Relations with States.
During the cordial discussions, the parties evoked the constructive relations that unite the Holy See and the Republic of Malta, and the collaboration between Church and State in favour of the human, social, cultural and spiritual progress of the population, in particular the young, in the light of the centuries-long contribution that Catholicism has offered the country.
Attention then turned to themes of common interest, with particular reference to the prospects of European integration and issues relating to the situation of the Mediterranean area, such as the migratory phenomenon, cooperation in development and interreligious dialogue.
The President was also accompanied by Maltese Foreign Minister Carmelo Abela.
The Maltese President has met Pope Francis on two other occasions in 2014 and 2016.
Later during the day, the President will be meeting Italian President Sergio Mattarella, at the Palazzo Quirinale in Rome.