THE POPE'S plans to go on a controversial Millennium pilgrimage to the Biblical site of Ur in Iraq remain unchanged, according to Patriarch Raphael Bidawid, head of the Chaldean Catholic Church in Baghdad.
"Up until now, we are assured that His Holiness will come to Iraq," the Patriarch said.
He added: "There is no change to his agenda or programme."
The Patriarch's statement was confirmed by Vatican spokesman Dr Joaquin Navarro-Valls.
He said that an advance team to prepare the way for the trip has been scheduled to travel to Iraq this week.