By Jueseppi B.
The President Travels to The Netherlands, Belgium, Italy, The Vatican And Saudi Arabia.
THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 22nd, 2014
DAILY GUIDANCE AND SCHEDULE FOR
FRIDAY, MARCH 22nd, 2014
White House Schedule
On Sunday, the President will depart Washington en route The Netherlands. The President’s departure from the South Lawn is open press.
8:50 PM: THE PRESIDENT departs the White House, The South Lawn.
9:05 PM: THE PRESIDENT departs Joint Base Andrews, Virginia Gate, Joint Base Andrews, for The Netherlands.
Schedule for the Week of March 24th – March 28th,2014
On Monday, the President will arrive in The Netherlands. In the morning, the President will tour the Rijksmuseum and hold a bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Rutte of The Netherlands. In the afternoon the President will participate in a bilateral meeting with President Xi Jinping of China at the United States Ambassador’s residence before arriving at the World Forum to participate in the Nuclear Security Summit. In the evening, the President will attend a G-7 leaders meeting on Ukraine at Catshuis, the official residence of the Prime Minister. Afterwards, he will join His Majesty King Willem-Alexander for dinner at the Royal Palace. The President will remain overnight in The Netherlands.
On Tuesday, the President will visit the World Forum to participate in the Nuclear Security Summit. Afterwards, the President will hold a bilateral press conference with Prime Minister Rutte. In the evening, the President will participate in a bilateral meeting with the Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi, Mohammed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan of the United Arab Emirates, at the United States Ambassador’s residence, and a trilateral meeting with President Park Geun-Hye of the Republic of Korea and Prime Minister Shinzo Abe of Japan. He will then meet with employees and family members of the U.S. Embassy to The Netherlands. The President will then travel to Brussels, Belgium where he will remain overnight.
On Wednesday, the President will visit Flanders Field Cemetery with Prime Minister Elio Di Rupo of Belgium and His Majesty King, Philippe. In the afternoon, he will participate in the EU-U.S. Summit at the Council of the European Union. Afterwards, the President will meet with employees and family members of the U.S. Tri-Mission to Belgium, EU, and NATO before meeting with NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen. In the evening, the President will deliver remarks at The Centre for Fine Arts (BOZAR) and then travel to Rome, Italy where he will remain overnight.
On Thursday, the President will visit the Vatican where he will meet with His Holiness Pope Francis followed by a meeting with Vatican Secretary of State Cardinal Pietro Parolin. Afterwards, the President will participate in a bilateral meeting with President Giorgio Napolitano of Italy at the Quirinal Palace. Later, the President will participate in a bilateral meeting and joint press conference with Prime Minister Matteo Renzi of Italy at Villa Madama. In the evening, the President will tour the Colosseum and meet with employees and families of the U.S. Tri-Mission to Italy, The Holy See, and the UN Agencies in Rome.
On Friday, the President will travel from Rome, Italy to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. While in Saudi Arabia, the President will participate in a bilateral meeting with His Majesty Abdullah bin Abdulaziz Al Saud of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia. The President will remain overnight in Saudi Arabia.
Ben Rhodes on the President’s Travel to The Netherlands, Belgium, Italy, The Vatican and Saudi Arabia.
March 22, 2014 | 52:31 | Public Domain
Ben Rhodes give The Presidents schedule for his trip to The Netherlands, Belgium, Italy, the Vatican and Saudi Arabia. White House Press Briefings are conducted most weekdays from the James S. Brady Press Briefing Roomin the West Wing.
President Obama Plans to Visit Pope Francis in March
President Barack Obama will travel to Italy in March to meet with Pope Francis for the first time, the White House announced Tuesday.
The March 27 visit to the Vatican comes as part of a European tour during which Obama will also visit the Netherlands, Belgium and Italy.
“The president looks forward to discussing with Pope Francis their shared commitment to fighting poverty and growing inequality,” said a White House statement.
Before arriving in Vatican City, Obama will spend two days in the Netherlands participating in the Nuclear Security Summit, hosted by the Dutch government. Those gathered will discuss security processes for nuclear materials, the statement said.
Obama will then travel to Brussels for a meeting with presidents of the European Council and the European Commission, and will also hold meetings with Belgian government officials and with NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen.
While in Italy, Obama will also meet with Italian President Giorgio Napolitano and Prime Minister Enrico Letta.
Obama and first lady Michelle Obama visited the Vatican in 2009 to meet with Pope Francis’ predecessor, Pope Benedict XVI.
President Barack Obama meets with Pope Francis on Thursday, departing for an overseas swing on Sunday evening—with an added starter in talks at other stops—figuring out how to punish Russia for invading Ukraine, since economic sanctions haven’t done much so far. The Sunday New York Times featured a front page story on Obama’s work with black Roman Catholic groups in Chicago in the 1980s.
It will be the first time Obama meets with the current pope. In July, 2009, Obama and First Lady Michelle (who wore a mantilla—a black lace head covering) visited with Pope Benedict XVI. (Former Obama advisor David Axelrod, now back in Chicago, was also part of the group.)
Discussing the upcoming audience with the pope at the Vatican, White House Deputy National Security Advisor Ben Rhodes used a phrase during Friday briefing—“income inequality”—that is a term embraced by Obama, the White House and Democrats to pressure Republicans to raise the minimum wage and approve other Obama proposals to help low-and-middle income earners.
Be aware of that when you read Rhodes’ comments in the next paragraphs about Obama’s meeting with the pope.
Rhodes said on Friday, Obama “will begin his day with an audience with Pope Francis. He has long looked forward to meeting Pope Francis. He has very much admired the leadership he has provided in his first year as Pope, his commitment to address issues like income inequality, and his leadership of the church more broadly. So that will be an important time for the President to have some personal interaction with the Pope and to hear about the very ambitious agenda that he has launched in his first year.”
Obama in the next week will travel to the Netherlands, Belgium, Italy, the Vatican and Saudi Arabia.
The New York Times story is headlined, “The Catholic Roots of Obama’s Activism: He Found His Voice in a Chicago Parish. Now He’ll Speak With the Pope,” and reported by Jason Horowitz who quotes, among others, Andrew Lyke, the director of the Chicago Archdiocese’s Office for Black Catholics.
Excerpt: “Mr. Obama’s old friends in the priesthood pray that Francis will discover a president freed from concerns about re-election and willing to rededicate himself to the vulnerable.
“…But the Vatican — aware that Mr. Obama has far more to gain from the encounter than the pope does, and wary of being used for American political consumption — warns that this will hardly be like the 1982 meeting at which President Ronald Reagan and Pope John Paul II agreed to fight Communism in Eastern Europe.”