VATICAN CITY - US President Donald Trump has not asked to meet Pope Francis during his visit to Italy next month for the Group of Seven summit, sources said on Tuesday, in what would be a highly unusual omission. Trump, who Francis suggested was "not Christian" if he wanted a wall on the Mexican border, is due in Sicily on May 26-27 for a meeting of the heads of the world's richest nations.

The two men have diametrically opposing positions on immigration, refugees, climate change and unbridled capitalism. Trump called the pope's criticism of his plan to build the Mexico wall "disgraceful". US presidents have in the past made a beeline for the Vatican while they were in Italy or Europe in order to meet with the head of the world's largest Christian church. Only one of them, John Kennedy, was a Roman Catholic.

President George W Bush met with a pope six times, three times each with Pope John Paul and Pope Benedict. "The situation can change but are only six weeks left so it looks unlikely at this point," said a diplomat, who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

A senior Vatican diplomatic source confirmed that the White House had so far made no approaches to the Holy See about a possible meeting, which would be the first between the two men. "The ball is on their side," said another Vatican source. "We have received no request." A spokesperson for the U.S. Embassy to the Vatican had no comment.