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Cardinal Laghi to Deliver a Papal Message to Bush

Cardinal Laghi to Deliver a Papal Message to Bush

VATICAN CITY, MARCH 2, 2003 ( John Paul II will send a special envoy to the United States with a message for President George W. Bush about the Iraq crisis.

Cardinal Pio Laghi, acting as the envoy, will deliver the message in person, said a statement issued Saturday by the Vatican press office.

"The cardinal, who will leave Rome within the next few days, will deliver a message of His Holiness and have the opportunity to illustrate the position and initiatives carried out by the Holy See to contribute to disarmament and peace in the Middle East," added Vatican spokesman Joaquín Navarro-Valls.

Cardinal Laghi, 80, has broad diplomatic experience. Before being named a cardinal in 1991, he was apostolic nuncio in Argentina from 1974 to 1980, the year in which he was designated apostolic delegate in the United States.

After official U.S.-Vatican relations were established in 1984, he was apostolic nuncio in Washington until April 1990. That is when he was entrusted with the direction of the Congregation for Catholic Education.


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