Vatican spokesman Father Federico Lombardi denied the speculations of Pope’s visit to Pakistan. There was news spreading with the information that the Holy Father had accepted an invitation from Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif which had given to him by two ministers who participated in the weekly general audience. However, Vatican spokesman said that there is “currently no travel program to Pakistan being studied.”
Pakistan Shipping minister Kamran Michael and religious affairs minister Sardar Muhammad Yousaf told reporters that they had gone Rome “to ask the Holy Father to come to Pakistan and he agreed.” Vatican on the other hand responded that the Pope was grateful for the invitation which he neither accepted nor rejected. The Holy Father doenot immediately said no. Thus his response was prematurely interpreted as a “yes”.
The Pope’s visit to the Indian subcontinent served as a reason for spreading news of Pope’s Pakistan visit. There was news that the Pontiff would visit India to canonize Blessed Mother Theresa. Naturally, Pakistan used the opportunity to invite the Pope to their country too.