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Cablegate: Vatican - "Views From the Hill"

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 VATICAN 001192

SIPDIS

DEPT. FOR EUR/WE (VAN CLEVE), EUR/WST, EUR/PD/PA, NEA/IAI,
NEA/NGA, SA/PAB, WHA/CAR, DRL/IRF

FROM EMBASSY VATICAN/MESSAGE NO. 28/01

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PHUM KMDR EAID PINR IZ AF UP DR PHUM KMDR EAID PINR IZ AF UP DR VT MEPP VTPREL MEPP
SUBJECT: VATICAN - "VIEWS FROM THE HILL"

1. THE FEBRUARY 24 - MARCH 02 EDITION OF NEWS AND VIEWS
FROM VATICAN CITY.

UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 02 VATICA 01192 01 OF 02 022245Z
CONTENTS:

- POPE CALLS WORLD'S CARDINALS TO ROME TO PLAN FUTURE
- VATICAN AND MOSLEMS ISSUE JOINT CALL FOR PEACE IN ISRAEL
- PAPAL APPEAL FOR AFGHANISTAN
- IRAQ'S CATHOLIC LEADER WARNS OF RETALIATION BY SADDAM
- UKRAINIAN CARDINAL COMMENTS ON STATE OF THE NATION
- AMCIT APPOINTED PAPAL REPRESENTATIVE TO DOMINICAN REPUBLIC

------------------------------------
POPE CALLS WORLD'S CARDINALS TO ROME
------------------------------------

2. POPE JOHN PAUL II HAS ORDERED ALL THE CATHOLIC CHURCH'S
CARDINALS TO ROME IN MAY TO DISCUSS POLICY ISSUES. CALLED AN
EXTRAORDINARY CONSISTORY, THE MAY 21-24 MEETING WILL ANALYZE
THE WAY THE POPE EXERCISES HIS AUTHORITY AND HOW THE WORLD'S
BISHOPS SHARE IN THE GOVERNANCE OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH.
VATICAN WATCHERS SUGGEST THE MEETING MIGHT ALSO ADDRESS THE
STATE OF RELATIONS BETWEEN THE CATHOLIC CHURCH AND OTHER
CHRISTIAN CHURCHES IN THE HOPE OF RE-ESTABLISHING FULL
UNITY. POPE JOHN PAUL HAS REGULARLY INSISTED ON THE PRIORITY
OF CHRISTIAN UNITY. AN EVENTUAL "RE-PHRASING" BY THE WORLD'S
CARDINALS OF HOW PAPAL AUTHORITY IS EXERCISED MAY MAKE IT
LESS OF A PROBLEM FOR OTHER CHRISTIAN CHURCHES, ESPECIALLY
THE ORTHODOX, TO ACCEPT.

----------------------------------
VATICAN AND MOSLEMS CALL FOR PEACE
----------------------------------

UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 03 VATICA 01192 01 OF 02 022245Z
3. A VATICAN DELEGATION MET IN CAIRO, EGYPT FEBRUARY 24
WITH REPRESENTATIVES OF ISLAM BASED AT AL-ALZHAR UNIVERSITY.
THE VATICAN'S INTER-RELIGIOUS DIALOGUE SPECIALIST, BISHOP
MICHAEL FITZGERALD, SAID THE MEETING FOCUSED IN PART ON "THE
DETERIORATING SITUATION ON THE MIDDLE EAST." A STATEMENT
RELEASED BY THE VATICAN SAID MOSLEM REPRESENTATIVES JOINED
ITS OWN DELEGATION IN CALLING FOR AN END TO THE ISRAELI-
PALESTINIAN VIOLENCE, ESPECIALLY IN "UNJUSTLY OCCUPIED"
PALESTINIAN TERRITORIES. THE JOINT STATEMENT AFFIRMED THE
SPECIAL CHARACTER OF JERUSALEM AS SACRED TO ALL THREE
MONOTHEISTIC RELIGIONS, AND CONDEMNED BREACHES OF THE
PRINCIPLE OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM, PARTICULARLY THE BLOCKING OF
ACCESS TO THE HOLY PLACES.

----------------------------
PAPAL APPEAL FOR AFGHANISTAN
----------------------------

4. POPE JOHN PAUL II APPEALED TO THE INTERNATIONAL
COMMUNITY ON BEHALF OF DROUGHT AND CIVIL WAR VICTIMS IN
AFGHANISTAN. AT THE CONCLUSION OF HIS FEBRUARY 28 GENERAL
AUDIENCE IN VATICAN CITY, THE POPE DECLARED THAT "A GRAVE
HUMANITARIAN EMERGENCY IS OCCURRING IN AFGHANISTAN." HE SAID
THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE, ESPECIALLY CHILDREN, THE SICK AND THE
ELDERLY, WERE DYING OF HUNGER AND COLD. THE POPE EXPRESSED
HIS APPRECIATION FOR THE EFFORTS OF HUMANITARIAN
ORGANIZATIONS WORKING IN THE REGION. HE APPEALED TO THE
INTERNATIONAL COMMUNITY "NOT TO FORGET THIS TRAGIC
SITUATION," AND URGED ALL PARTIES IN "A WAR WHICH HAS BEEN
TOO LONG AND BLOODY" TO ARRANGE AN IMMEDIATE CEASE-FIRE TO
ALLOW AID TO REACH PEOPLE MOST AT RISK.
UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 04 VATICA 01192 01 OF 02 022245Z

--------------------------------------------- ---------
IRAQI PATRIARCH DECLARES SADDAM CAPABLE OF RETALIATION
--------------------------------------------- ---------

5. PATRIARCH RAPHAEL BIDAWID OF BAGHDAD DECLARED THAT
RENEWED BOMBINGS OF MILITARY TARGETS BY US AND BRITISH
AIRCRAFT COULD PUSH SADDAM HUSSEIN "TO RETALIATE OUT OF
DESPERATION." IN AN FEBRUARY 25 INTERVIEW WITH VATICAN NEWS
AGENCY "FIDES," BIDAWID OPINED THAT "THE WHOLE OF THE ARAB
WORLD IS NOW AGAINST THE AMERICANS AND THE BRITISH, AND
READY TO COMMIT VIOLENCE AGAINST THE USA AND BRITAIN IN
THEIR OWN COUNTRIES." THE PATRIARCH SAID THAT THE MORE
SADDAM HUSSEIN IS "MALTREATED", THE GREATER THE SUPPORT HE
RECEIVES FROM ORDINARY IRAQIS. BIDAWID CALLED FOR A "SERIOUS
DIALOGUE" AND DECLARED THAT AIR STRIKES WOULD ONLY LEAD TO
MORE VIOLENCE. ACCORDING TO THE CATHOLIC LEADER, WESTERNERS
DO NOT APPRECIATE THE ARAB MENTALITY AND THAT IF AN ARAB'S
DIGNITY IS OFFENDED "HE WILL BE AS FEROCIOUS AS A LION."
BIDAWID SAID "IT HAS BECOME OBVIOUS TO EVERYONE" THAT
ECONOMIC SANCTIONS DIRECTED AT IRAQ HAVE NOT WEAKENED SADDAM
HUSSEIN'S CONTROL OVER THE COUNTRY.

UNCLASSIFIED

UNCLASSIFIED PTQ9417

PAGE 01 VATICA 01192 02 OF 02 022246Z
ACTION EUR-00

INFO LOG-00 AID-00 CIAE-00 COME-00 CTME-00 DODE-00 WHA-00
SRPP-00 EB-00 EXIM-01 E-00 UTED-00 VC-00 FRB-00
H-01 TEDE-00 INR-00 IO-00 ITC-01 L-00 AC-01
NEA-00 NSAE-00 NSCE-00 OIC-02 OMB-01 OPIC-01 PA-00
PM-00 PRS-00 ACE-00 P-00 SP-00 SSO-00 SS-00
STR-00 TRSE-00 T-00 USIE-00 SA-00 PMB-00 PRM-01
DRL-02 G-00 SAS-00 /011W
------------------CCEE35 022246Z /69
R 021145Z MAR 01
FM AMEMBASSY VATICAN
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 0000
INFO EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
AMEMBASSY SANTO DOMINGO
AMEMBASSY ISLAMABAD

UNCLAS SECTION 02 OF 02 VATICAN 001192

SIPDIS

DEPT. FOR EUR/WE (VAN CLEVE), EUR/WST, EUR/PD/PA, NEA/IAI,
NEA/NGA, SA/PAB, WHA/CAR, DRL/IRF

FROM EMBASSY VATICAN/MESSAGE NO. 28/01

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PHUM KMDR EAID PINR IZ AF UP DR PHUM KMDR EAID PINR IZ AF UP DR VT MEPP VTPREL MEPP

SUBJECT: VATICAN - "VIEWS FROM THE HILL"

UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 02 VATICA 01192 02 OF 02 022246Z

--------------------------------------------- -----------
UKRAINE'S CARDINAL ASSESSES NATIONAL AND RELIGIOUS UNITY
--------------------------------------------- -----------

6. UKRAINE'S NEWLY CREATED CARDINAL LUBOMYR HUSAR WANTS TO
"REASON WITH" HIS ORTHODOX CHURCH COUNTERPARTS WHO OBJECT TO
A PAPAL VISIT IN JUNE. SPEAKING AT A FEBRUARY 22 PRESS
CONFERENCE IN VATICAN CITY, HUSAR SAID CATHOLICS IN UKRAINE
HAVE THE SAME CULTURE, HISTORY, CHURCH STRUCTURE, THEOLOGY
AND DISCIPLINE AS THE ORTHODOX CHURCH. HUSAR ACKNOWLEDGED
THE TENSE RELATIONSHIP WITH ORTHODOX CHURCH LEADERS BUT SAID
THE SITUATION "IS NOT A STALEMATE." ACCORDING TO THE
CARDINAL, THERE ARE TWO COMPLICATING FACTORS. THE FIRST IS
THE GROWING STRENGTH OF THE CATHOLIC CHURCH IN UKRAINE,
WHICH AFTER YEARS OF COMMUNIST REPRESSION IS "REBOUNDING
WITH VIGOROUS HEALTH" AND IS ACCUSED BY THE ORTHODOX OF
COMPETING FOR SOULS. SECONDLY, HUSAR SAID, THE ORTHODOX
LEADERSHIP IS SPLINTERED AND THE MOSCOW PATRIARCHATE FEARS
THAT A PAPAL VISIT MIGHT LEND CREDIBILITY TO ORTHODOX
LEADERS OTHER THAN THE ONES BACKED BY MOSCOW. (NOTE: THE
VATICAN HAS SAID POPE JOHN PAUL II WILL BE VISITING CATHOLIC
FAITHFUL AND WILL NOT MAKE ANY INSENSITIVE INITIATIVES
TOWARDS ORTHODOX LEADERS. END NOTE). CARDINAL HUSAR POINTED
OUT THAT IN THE PAST THE COMMUNIST PROPAGANDA MACHINE HAD
PORTRAYED THE CATHOLIC CHURCH AS A TOOL OF THE WEST
DEDICATED TO THE DESTRUCTION OF THE SOVIET STATE, AND THAT
THE LINGERING EFFECTS OF THAT MESSAGE MAKE MANY UKRAINIANS
UNEASY ABOUT THE CHURCH. HUSAR OPINED THAT THE UKRAINIAN
GOVERNMENT BACKED THE PAPAL VISIT AS A "MEANS OF DRAWING THE
COUNTRY CLOSER TO THE OTHER NATIONS OF EUROPE."
UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 03 VATICA 01192 02 OF 02 022246Z

-------------------------------
AMCIT APPOINTED AS PAPAL NUNCIO
-------------------------------

7. POPE JOHN PAUL II HAS APPOINTED AMCIT VATICAN DIPLOMAT,
MONSIGNOR TIMOTHY BROGLIO, AS PAPAL REPRESENTATIVE TO THE
DOMINICAN REPUBLIC AND PUERTO RICO. THE 49-YEAR-OLD
CLEVELAND NATIVE WILL BE ORDAINED AN ARCHBISHOP BY THE POPE
IN A MARCH 19 VATICAN CITY CEREMONY. AT PRESENT, BROGLIO IS
CHIEF OF STAFF FOR VATICAN SECRETARY OF STATE (PRIME
MINISTER EQUIVALENT), CARDINAL ANGELO SODANO. HE WAS
ORDAINED A PRIEST IN 1977 AND HAS A DOCTORATE DEGREE IN
CHURCH LAW. BROGLIO ENTERED THE VATICAN'S DIPLOMATIC SERVICE
IN 1983 AND HAS SERVED IN IVORY COAST AND PARAGUAY, AS WELL
AS AT THE VATICAN FOREIGN MINISTRY. HE SPEAKS FRENCH,
ITALIAN AND SPANISH. MERANTE

UNCLASSIFIED

>

2001VATICA01192 - Classification: UNCLASSIFIED

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