Al-Azhar, Vatican to resume dialogue after 4-year suspension

Al-Azhar announced agreeing to resume dialogue with the Vatican on the basis of mutual respect between religions.
Undersecretary of Al-Azhar Abbas Shouman said in a statement Saturday that Al-Azhar welcomes the resumption of dialogue at any time without reservations.
The statement praised remarks by the Pope where he distinguished terrorism from Islam saying the Pope's statement reflected respect to the religion.
Shouman described his meeting with the Pope, during his recent visit to the Vatican to represent Al-Azhar in the counter-slavery conference, as "wonderful."
"We want an official stance by the Vatican to show respect to the Islamic religion and remove the effects of the previous Pope's remarks, which were not good for Islam and Muslims," said Shouman.
Spokesman for the Catholic Church Rafiq Graish said the Church in Egypt welcomes the resumption of dialogue between Al-Azhar and the Vatican after it was suspended since early 2011.
A delegation from the Vatican met with late adviser to Al-Azhar Grand Sheikh Mahmoud Azab and agreed to resume dialogue but Azab's death prevented that, Graish mentioned.
Graish added in a statement to Al-Masry Al-Youm that President Abdel Fattah al-Sisi's visit to the Vatican last year had a positive impact on the resuption of dialogue. Graish hoped dialogue with Al-Azhar would be reactivated starting next February.
Edited translation from Al-Masry Al-Youm

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