Pope Benedict XVI said here Friday that he hoped his four-day visit to Turkey would contribute to a "better understanding" between religions. The Pope, who said he was "leaving part of my heart in Istanbul," was speaking to Istanbul Governor Muammer Guler minutes before boarding a Turkish Airlines plane for Rome at the end of his first visit to a Muslim country.
His words were heard over Turkish television, which was broadcasting the event live.
"As head of the Catholic Church and spiritual leader, it is my duty (to work for) dialogue and a better understanding between religions, particularly Islam and Christianity," Benedict XVI said. "I will consider myself happy if my trip has contributed to this."