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Pope set to focus on social issues in address to MEPs

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Pope set to focus on social issues in address to MEPs
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Pope Francis will address the European Parliament on Tuesday, becoming the second-ever pontiff to do so.

He is likely to touch upon a number of key issues during his long-awaited address to MEPs.

Pope Francis has long been a critics of harsh austerity policies in Europe, expressing his concern about how they impact upon the poorest.

Last year, he also hit out at corporate greed and excessive salaries in the financial sector.

The pope’s visit is being seen as a purely political one; he won’t be visiting Strasbourg’s cathedral during his one-day stop off.

The last pontiff to have addressed MEPs was Pope John Paul II in 1988.

Just one year before the Berlin Wall came down, Europe looked very different.

The European Community, the precursor to the European Union, was made up of just 12 member states.

John Paul called for deeper integration and a wider enlargement of the so-called European project; 16 years before a raft of former communist countries joined the EU.

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