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Brussels, 11 February 2013
Statement on the announcement by Pope Benedict XVI
The President of the European Commission, José Manuel Barroso, noted with emotion the announcement made today by his Holiness Pope Benedict XVI regarding his imminent resignation.
President Barroso expressed his great respect for the work accomplished by Pope Benedict XVI and for his tireless support for defending ecumenical values, such as peace and the consideration given to human rights. The spirit of reconciliation which motivated the reflections and actions of the Holy Father must also be praised.
President Barroso remembers vividly the exchanges he was able to have with his Holiness Pope Benedict XVI, in particular during a private audience in 2006, which were opportunities to share a particular vision of Europe and the world, built on ideas of peace, justice and solidarity.