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Pope cancels COP28 trip to Dubai due to health reasons

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Pope Francis has cancelled his planned trip to the COP28 climate meeting in Dubai because of the effects of influenza and lung inflammation, the Vatican said on Tuesday.

The pope, who is 86, was due to begin a three-day visit to Dubai on Friday and the Vatican had said earlier on Tuesday that he was going ahead with the trip.

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“Although the Holy Father’s general clinical condition has improved with regard to the flu and inflammation of the respiratory tract, doctors have asked the pope not to make the trip planned for the coming days to Dubai,” the Vatican said.

The pope had agreed not to travel “with great regret,” it added.

Francis, as a young man in his native Argentina, had part of a lung removed.

The Vatican announced on Monday the pope would limit his activities this week in order to conserve his strength.

A CT scan done at a Rome hospital on Saturday excluded pneumonia but detected inflammation in the pope’s lungs that caused breathing difficulties. He was receiving antibiotics intravenously, the Vatican said on Monday.

The pope met with Spanish bishops visiting the Vatican on Tuesday.

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