Pope's Official Recognition Of Palestine Enrages Israel

By R. Siva Kumar - 14 May '15 18:20PM
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The Vatican has recognized Palestine, after finalizing a treaty on Wednesday, although Israel slammed the move as opposing peace, according to rt.

The treaty is not yet officially signed, but states that the Vatican has shifted "diplomatic allegiance" from the Palestinian Liberation Organization to the state of Palestine. The treaty was finalized a few days before Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas visits Pope Francis.

The Vatican said that the "bilateral commission of the Holy See and the State of Palestine" was giving the final touches to the treaty. "The agreement will be submitted to the respective authorities for approval ahead of setting a debate in the near future for the signing," it said, according to theguardian.

Abbas will attend the "canonization of four new saints" by the Pope. Two of them are Palestinian nuns, which have been seen as a "sign of hope" for the area by the Latin patriarch of Jerusalem, Fouad Twal, according to Vatican Insider.

The Vatican has referred to Palestine for over a year, even during the Pope's visit to Israel last year. During his visit to the Holy Land, the Pope pleaded that both sides should maintain peace.

A spokesman for the Vatican, the Reverend Federico Lombardi said: "Yes, it's a recognition that the state exists."

Israel's foreign ministry said that it was "disappointed".

"This move does not promote the peace process and distances the Palestinian leadership from returning to direct and bilateral negotiations," the ministry said in a text message, AP reported. "Israel will study the agreement and will consider its steps accordingly."

In 2012, the Vatican had appreciated a decision by the UN General Assembly to "recognize Palestine as a non-member observer state". The current treaty is like an official diplomatic recognition.

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