Pope Benedict XVI stressed his “deep respect” for Islam as he arrived in Jordan to begin a Middle East visit. He described religious freedom as a fundamental human right, and said he hoped the Catholic church could play a role in the Middle East peace process. The Pope says he is going on his eight-day tour – his first to the region as pontiff – as a “pilgrim of peace”. But Jordanian Islamist leaders have demanded that he apologise for a speech in 2006 that linked Islam and violence.
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