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Papal nuncio says diplomatic accord with Israel is close

June 20, 2013

Archbishop Giuseppe Lazzarotto, the apostolic nuncio to Israel, reports that he is “optimistic” about the conclusion of a diplomatic accord establishing the legal and economic rights of Church institutions in the Holy Land.

Israel’s deputy foreign minister Zeev Elkin predicted earlier this month that the agreement, which has been under negotiation for 16 years, would finally be reached by the end of this year. But Israeli diplomats have frequently expressed optimism about the prospects for an accord, while Vatican representatives have been more cautious. Archbishop Lazzarotto is the first ranking Vatican official to confirm that an agreement is near.

The papal nuncio did say, however, that there are “still a few obstacles” to be overcome before a pact can be signed.


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  • Posted by: Minnesota Mary - Jun. 21, 2013 12:37 AM ET USA

    It's taken over twenty years. So a "few obstacles to overcome" should give the Israelis several more years of having everything they wanted before the Church may get what it has desired.