Pope to take on hot EU topics in Strasbourg visit

Pope Francis is set to deliver his first major speech on Europe, focusing on complex continental issues such as joblessness and immigration.

PTI| Updated: Nov 24, 2014, 22:40 PM IST

Strasbourg: Pope Francis is set to deliver his first major speech on Europe, focusing on complex continental issues such as joblessness and immigration.

The pontiff's whirlwind, four-hour visit tomorrow to the European Parliament and the Council of Europe, Europe's main human rights body, in Strasbourg is shaping up as more a secular stop than a liturgical layover.

Aides say the pontiff will address topics including unemployment and immigration, two hot-button issues in Europe.

To the disgruntlement of some locals, he won't visit Strasbourg's famed cathedral.

Some left-leaning lawmakers argue he has no place visiting secular European institutions.

Francis' trip is the first by a pope to Strasbourg since John Paul II visited in 1988. That was a very different Europe -- before the Berlin Wall fell.