00 5/7/2009 8:17 PM


VATICAN CITY, 7 MAY 2009 (VIS) - The Holy See Press Office released the following communique at midday today:

This morning, Thursday 7 May, the Holy Father Benedict XVI received in audience Elias Antonio Saca Gonzalez, president of the Republic of El Salvador. The president subsequently went on to meet Cardinal Secretary of State Tarcisio Bertone S.D.B.

In the course of the cordial discussions, attention focused on various questions concerning internal issues and the current international situation noting, among other things, the country's commitment to promoting co-operation in the area of trade, to the struggle against organised crime, to the field of education and emigration, and to social promotion.

Finally, the good relations between Church and State were highlighted, and the hope expressed that they may grow stronger in order to favour spiritual progress, pacification and national development

The President was accompanied by his wife, Ana Maixco Sol, and an official delegation.

[Edited by TERESA BENEDETTA 6/1/2009 3:56 AM]