Vladimir Putin Will Meet the Pope

Details are still being finalized

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Russian President Vladimir PutinĀ is going to the Vatican to meet with Pope Francis on Nov. 25, the Vatican press office said Thursday.

The visit marks a warming of relations between the Vatican and Russia, which has in the past accused the Catholic Church of trying to poach converts in the wake of the fall of Soviet communism. Pope John Paul II never visited the country in his nearly three-decade tenure amid opposition from the Russian Orthodox Church.

Details of the meeting are forthcoming, but the Vatican press office said the Pope has been closely following developments in Syria, where Russia holds significant influence, and is likely to push for an end to the violence there.