The Pope is unable to travel in the papal plane due to knee pain
ON THE PAPAL AIRCRAFT (Reuters) – Pope Francis’ knee pain was so severe on his way to Bahrain on Thursday that he was unable to walk around the papal plane greeting accompanying reporters as he usually does.
The 85-year-old pope has walked with a cane since tearing a knee ligament earlier this year and occasionally uses a wheelchair, but has always managed to get around on flights to exchange a few words with the Vatican press corps. .
“I’m in a lot of pain today and I’m not going to move on the plane, so I’m going to sit down and you come to me,” Francis told reporters on the flight to Bahrain for a four-day trip.
He said he went to physical therapy on Wednesday and the next day his knee is always sore.
Despite the pain, Francis appeared in good spirits as reporters greeted him privately at the front of the plane.
“It will be an interesting trip that will make us think,” Francis said.
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The Nov. 3-6 trip is aimed at improving ties with the Islamic world, but the pope must also navigate the human rights conflict in Bahrain, which pits the Sunni Muslim monarchy against its Shiite Muslim opposition.
Francis will speak at the Bahrain Dialogue Forum. East and West for Human Coexistence,” will hold talks with King Hamad bin Isa al-Khalifa and meet with Muslim elders at a mosque in the royal palace complex.
Bahrain said the interfaith forum it is hosting during the pope’s visit aims to “increase the values of peace and tolerance,” including dialogue to promote coexistence.
(Reporting by Philip Pullella; Writing by Gavin Jones; Editing by Gareth Jones)
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