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Updated: April 4, 2011 14:45 IST

In Israeli-Palestinian conflict, Vatican supports Palestinians

Katyayani Murti
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The Hindu

Church worried Israeli policies could affect Catholics in West Asia

Concern for Catholics in West Asia led the Vatican to call into question Israel's policies regarding Palestine, extending Church support to Palestinians, according a confidential cable made available to The Hindu by WikiLeaks.

In a July 24, 2002 meeting, U.S. Acting Deputy Chief of Mission George Frowick and Archbishop Antonio Veglio, Secretary of the Congregation for Eastern Churches, shared worries that “the Eastern Churches — the 22 Christian Rites that are not Roman Catholic but are in communion with Rome — face a number of challenges that cast long shadows over their future” (3387: confidential, dated July 26).

According to the cable, Archbishop Veglio told Mr. Frowick that his “congregation, as elsewhere in the Holy See is deeply troubled by Israeli policies vis-à-vis the Palestinians,” which they viewed as a potential threat to Catholics in West Asia.

“The congregation will remain active in seeking to support the Palestinians as a means of preserving the remnants of the Catholic presence in the region,” the cable says.

Eastern Churches in “Arab countries are coming under increasing pressure, and have ‘a big question mark' over their futures,” according to the cable.

“According to Archbishop Veglio, the lack of separation between faith and state is the chief hurdle,” and, the cable says, “Veglio observed that the mixing of state and religion…caused problems in Israel,” though he did note the Jewish state was “the only country in the region with ‘democratic aspects.'”

“Where ‘national faiths' are close to or indistinguishable from political power, Archbishop Veglio observed, the Catholic faithful face persistent discrimination and the Church finds it difficult to conduct its pastoral duties,” according to the cable.

Archbishop Veglio, who was “returning to Rome after nearly 30 years of overseas Holy See diplomatic work, said his congregation's primary duty was to ensure that these [Eastern] Churches are able to carry out pastoral care of the faithful wherever they are,” the cable says.

(This article is a part of the series "The India Cables" based on the US diplomatic cables accessed by The Hindu via Wikileaks.)

The media don't tell the truth all the time. They just tell what is best for us to know. When they talk about the Israeli-Palestinian conflict all i hear is about Israel but i never hear about how Palestine is doing. Israel is so ambitious that they only care about getting the land but not how much people are being affected because of this. Peace is what we need in our world in Palestine.

from:  V.Orellana
Posted on: Jun 1, 2011 at 20:45 IST

As a student, I have realized many things that the media chooses to keep out of this topic. There is bloodshed on both sides of this issue, neither one of the two groups are innocent. However what we see most in the Media is that people only choose to take Israel's side. True, they have endured alot, and true, they have been shunned for centuries. I have no problem with the Israeli people having land. What the problem is. is that the EXTRA land that was obtained, that was not set aside for them. Not only is that unfair, but also it is immoral. Like President Obama stated, peace talks can only begin if the Israeli people return to the 1967 borders.

from:  T.allen
Posted on: Jun 1, 2011 at 06:53 IST
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