Communist Cuba rolls out red carpet for Pope Francis

Head of the Roman Catholic church is due to arrive in Havana, the first leg of his visit to Cuba and the United States.

    The head of the Roman Catholic church is due to arrive in Havana, the first leg of his visit to Cuba and the United States.

    Pope Francis is set to arrive on Saturday and will spend four days on the communist Caribbean island before flying to the US capital, Washington DC. 

    It is the first time for Francis to visit both countries as pope, who has been credited with helping bring about a thaw in relations between the two former Cold War rivals.

    On Saturday, the government launched an effort to bring crowds into the streets of Havana, offering a day's pay, snacks and transportation to state workers who gather along the pope's route from the airport to his residence at the papal ambassador's home, according to the Associated Press. 

    University students also have been recruited to come out for the pope, the report said. 

    Al Jazeera's Latin America Editor Lucia Newman reports from Havana.

    SOURCE: Al Jazeera and agencies


    YOU MIGHT ALSO LIKE

    Assad to Putin: Thank you for 'saving our country'

    Assad to Putin: Thank you for 'saving our country'

    Russian and Syrian presidents meet to discuss strategy against 'terrorism' and political settlement options.

    What is behind the covert Israeli-Saudi relations?

    What is behind the covert Israeli-Saudi relations?

    Analysts say that the recent covert ties between Israel and Saudi Arabia are due to a new regional paradigm.

    Is Saudi Arabia becoming a danger to the region?

    Is Saudi Arabia becoming a danger to the region?

    We talk to US Congressman Ro Khanna about power politics and debate Mohammed bin Salman's new strategy for the Kingdom.