Vatican And the Holy Land
Vatican, April 24, 2002

Five Key Points Of Holy See On Holy Land

Mr. Chairman,

My Delegation wishes to stress, in this important forum, the Holy See’s
recently reconfirmed position, regarding the continuing conflict in the Holy
Land.

Five key points
This position is articulated in the five following points:

1. Unequivocal condemnation of terrorism, from whatever side it may come.

2. Disapproval of the conditions of injustice and humiliation imposed on the
Palestinian people, as well as reprisals and retaliation, which only make
the sense of frustration and hatred grow.

3. Respect for the United Nations Resolutions by all sides.

4. Proportionality in the use of legitimate means of defense.

5. The duty for the parties in conflict to protect the Holy places, which
are of the greatest importance to the three monotheistic religions and a
patrimony of all of humanity.

The Holy See is in close contact, among others, with the Latin Patriarch of
Jerusalem and the religious communities of Bethlehem, and has conveyed to
them the Holy Father's complete solidarity in this sorrowful moment.
Acts of solidarity will bring the return to negotiation
After recalling that nothing can be resolved by conflict and that it only
brings greater suffering and death, Pope John Paul II stressed that no
political or religious leader can remain silent and inactive. Denunciation
must be followed by practical acts of solidarity that will help everyone to
rediscover mutual respect and return to frank negotiation.
In this spirit and convinced that, when the merciless logic of arms
prevails, only God can bring hearts to peaceful thoughts, Pope John Paul II
asked the Catholic Church to pray more intensely on Sunday, April 7 last,
for the people suffering from this terrible violence.
Commitment to peace initiatives

Mr. Chairman,
The protection and the promotion of peace has always been high in the Agenda
of our Organisation.
Many Religions proclaim that peace is a gift from God. This was also the
experience of the recent meeting of Assisi. At that time, my Delegation
informed the Permanent Council of the meaning of that event and the purpose
of the "Commitment for peace" signed by the Religious leaders present at
Assisi and subsequently sent to the Head of States and Governments.
The Holy See hopes that the aforementioned initiatives will effectively
encourage those who have the responsibility and the possibility to take the
necessary action, however difficult it might be, to demand scrupulous
respect for human rights and humanitarian law and to urge the parties in
conflict towards agreements which are fair and honorable for everyone.
Thank you, Mr. Chairman.