Pope urges position quo, ‘wisdom and prudence’ for Jerusalem

VATICAN Town (AP) – Pope Francis called found on Wednesday for the status quo of Jerusalem to be respected and for “wisdom and prudence” to prevail to avoid further conflict, hours before the anticipated announcement that the United States is normally recognizing Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

Francis made the appeal during his weekly target audience, after talking to the Palestinian innovator and soon after meeting with a good delegation of Palestinian spiritual and intellectual representatives in a previously scheduled target audience.

Francis said he was “profoundly concerned” about recent developments concerning Jerusalem, and declared metropolis a distinctive and sacred place for Christians, Jews and Muslims that has a “special vocation for peace.”

He appealed “that eveyrone respects the position quo of the city,” according to U.N. resolutions.

“I pray to the Lord that its identity is preserved and strengthened for the benefit of the Holy Terrain, the center East and depends upon and that wisdom and prudence prevail to avoid new factors of tension from being added to a global context previously convulsed by so many cruel conflicts,” he said.

The Vatican has lengthy sought an internationally guaranteed status for Jerusalem that safeguards its sacred character for Jews, Muslims and Christians.

Francis spoke by phone on Tuesday with Palestinian innovator Mahmoud Abbas, after President Donald Trump told Abbas of his decision to recognize Jerusalem while Israel’s capital. The Vatican stated the decision with Francis was made at Abbas’ initiative.

Early on Wednesday, Francis met with a delegation of Palestinian religious and intellectual leaders who were at the Vatican for a previously scheduled meeting with the Vatican’s interreligious dialogue office. The Vatican and the Palestinians plan to create a permanent working group on interfaith concerns.

In his comments to the group, Francis expressed his expect “peace and prosperity” for the Palestinian people and needed dialogue that respects the rights of everybody in the Holy Land.

“The primary condition of this dialogue is reciprocal respect and a commitment to strengthening that respect, for the sake of recognizing the rights of all people, wherever they happen to be,” he said.

Francis visited the Holy Terrain in 2014 and later hosted Abbas and the then-Israeli president, Shimon Peres, for an interreligious peace prayer in the Vatican gardens. Renewed conflict broke out in the Gaza Strip soon thereafter.

The Holy See recognized the Palestinian status in 2015.

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