Once again francis travels to south america, once again he makes a detour around argentina. Speculation ahead of his week-long visit to chile and peru: the pope does not want to become a pawn in domestic politics in his home country, it is said.
Vatican spokesman greg burke gives no hint before the trip that starts on monday. "We must fly over argentina, so he must also send a message. So there will be an interesting telegram."The pope is in the habit of sending digging messages to the countries he overflies.
Argentina is highly polarized politically – apparently franciscus does not want to be appropriated either by president mauricio macri or by his left-wing opponent and predecessor cristina kirchner. "It is feared that a visit could be instrumentalized to aggravate this division," said the rector of the pontifical catholic university of argentina and confidant of the pope, archbishop victor manuel fernandez, last year.