Friday, February 12, 2016

In Cuba, To Russia With Love

It's almost like deja vu... but it isn't – just shy of five months since his first trek to Cuba, this afternoon sees the Pope return to Havana's José Martí Airport, only this time for a moment no one could've predicted last September or even days ago: the first-ever meeting between a Roman Pontiff and Patriarch of Christianity's second-largest communion, the Russian Orthodox Church.

SVILUPPO (2.45pm): With Francis landed slightly behind schedule just after 2pm local/US Eastern time, here's Vatican TV's fullvid of the historic moment – the initial embrace between the Pope and Patriarch Kirill and a brief opening photo-op before two hours of private talks:

Again, the duo are slated to emerge from closed-door discussions at 4.30pm ET, at which point they'll exchange speeches and the much-awaited joint declaration will be signed.

SVILUPPO 2 (4.15pm): With Pope and Patriarch slated to emerge momentarily, here's the livefeed, with English translation....

...and here, the full English text of the Joint Declaration as signed by the Pope and Patriarch.