Catholic Communications, Sydney Archdiocese,
4 Jun 2010
It is trip number 16 for the pope, who landed in Paphos, Cyprus, aboard a plane of the Italian company, Alitalia.
In the airport they received the president of Cyprus and the principal representative of the Orthodox Church in the island, Chrysostomos II.
In the first address in the island, Benedict XVI highlighted how the strategic position of Cyprus has made it so that major cultures and religions are present.
The pope also asked for peace on the island, divided since the 70s in two areas, one under Turkish influence and the other under Greek influence.
"May the love of your homeland and of your families and the desire to live in harmony with your neighbours under the compassionate protection of almighty God, inspire you patiently to resolve the remaining concerns that you share with the international community."
Benedict XVI said that with this trip he aims to strengthen ties between religious authorities and encourage the island's Catholics, who represent 3.1 percent of the country.