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Syrian conflict cannot be resoled by arms, Vatican envoy says, urging ceasefire

January 23, 2014

“There is no military solution to the Syrian crisis,” the Vatican’s delegate told an international peace conference in Geneva on January 23.

Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, the Vatican’s permanent representative at UN headquarters in Geneva, said that the “indescribable suffering of the Syrian people” calls for prompt international action. Addressing those involved in the fighting, he renewed the Vatican’s “urgent appeal to all the parties concerned for the full and absolute respect for humanitarian law.”

Archbishop Tomasi suggested “an immediate ceasefire without preconditions,” to be followed by an increase in humanitarian aid to the victims of the long and bloody conflict. At the same time, he said, Syrian leaders should engage in serious negotiations, with the support of the international community.

A negotiated solution to the conflict in Syria might serve as “a catalyst of peace in other parts of the region,” the archbishop said.


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