Erdogan to visit Rome and Vatican

Tight security and street closures in Rome for visit of Turkish leader.

Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan will pay an official two-day visit to Rome on 4-5 February, during which time he will meet Pope Francis, Italian president Sergio Mattarella and Italian premier Paolo Gentiloni.

More than 3,000 officers will be on duty during the Rome visit, and each of the president's routes through the city will be selected at the last minute, for security reasons. Street closures and traffic problems are expected in the city centre on both days.

President Erdoğan, who is reportedly staying at the Hotel Excelsior on Via Veneto, will make the first Turkish presidential trip to the Vatican in 59 years. In 2014 Pope Francis was Erdogan's guest at the presidential palace in Ankara.