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Pope cancels engagements due to cold, need to rest ahead of trip

In this Monday, May 12, 2014 photo, a welcome banner with a picture of Pope Francis hangs over a street near the Church of the Nativity, one of the stops of Pope Francis during his upcoming visit in the Holy Land at the end of this month, in the West Bank city of Bethlehem. (AP Photo/Nasser Nasser)

VATICAN CITY: Pope Francis has cancelled his engagements for Friday because of a cold and will not make a planned visit to a Rome parish this weekend so that he can rest ahead of a trip to the Middle East next week, the Vatican said on Friday.

Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi said there were no worries about the health of the 77-year-old pope and everything was "tranquil".

He said the pope was likely to resume his engagements on Saturday but that he would skip a visit to a sanctuary outside Rome that had been planned for Sunday so he could rest.

Francis is due to make a trip to Jordan, the Palestinian Territories and Israel May 24-26.

 

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