Holy See: int'l cooperation needed to end Mideast conflicts

A young Syrian refugee girl cries after arriving at the Turkish-border city of Sanliurfa in June.

The Holy See has renewed its call for international cooperation to bring to an end the conflicts in the Middle East and help care for the millions of refugees from Iraq and the Syrian war.

In a speech to the United Nations Security Council during an open debate on July 30 regarding “the situation in the Middle East, including the Palestinian, question,” Archbishop Bernardito Auza, the Apostolic Nuncio and Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the United Nations, said the “dramatic humanitarian situation” in Syria is “particularly preoccupying.” 

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Calling for a renewed commitment by all to achieve a political solution to the conflict, he said “we should not continue to look helplessly from the sidelines while a great country is being destroyed.”

He described the so-called Islamic State group terrorizing the region as a “terrorist plague” that must be thwarted with the unified cooperation of the entire international community.

Lebanon and Jordan, which host millions of refugees, he added, bear the brunt of the Syrian conflict and urgently need the world’s solidarity.

He noted the Holy See’s hopes that the institutional vacuum of Lebanon’s Presidency (constitutionally held by a Christian but vacant for more than a year) will soon be filled.

He reiterated the Holy See’s concern for the region’s minority communities, particularly its Christians, who have been forced from their homes and welcomed the recent accord reached between Iran and the 5+1 group of nations.

Recalling the Comprehensive Agreement signed by the Holy See and the State of Palestine in June, Archbishop Auza said it is hoped that the Agreement will stimulate the “achievement of a two State solution, bringing a definitive end to the longstanding Israeli-Palestinian conflict.”

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norman ravitch
2 years 9 months ago
If the international community had followed Vatican advise in 1947 and made Jerusalem into an international city a lot of our current troubles there might have been avoided. Right now Jews and Muslims are on the edge of violence over the Temple Mount while Christians are increasingly insecure and unloved by both Jews and Muslims.
norman ravitch
2 years 9 months ago
While Christianity originated of course in the Middle East it quickly became a non-semitic religion under the influence of Hellenism and Romanism; it became European. The current diminution of Christian populations in the Middle East is unfortunate but perhaps inevitable.

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