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Papal message calls for pursuit of disarmament, but reaffirms ‘inalienable right to self-defense’

November 10, 2023

» Continue to this story on Vatican Press Office

CWN Editor's Note: Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Holy See’s Secretary of State, has sent a message in the Pope’s name to the sixth conference of the Paris Peace Forum. French President Emmanuel Macron initiated the forum in 2017 to strengthen multilateralism and encourage peace.

The Pontiff, said Cardinal Parolin, “hopes that the commitments made will encourage sincere dialogue, based on listening to the cries of all those who suffer as a result of terrorism, violence in general and wars, all scourges that benefit only certain groups by feeding particular interests, unfortunately often disguised by noble intentions.”

The papal message, released on November 10, decried the “persistent gap between the solemn commitments” of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (1948) and the reality experienced by “millions of people on every continent.”

While deploring the effects of war, the papal message reaffirmed “the inalienable right to self-defense and the responsibility to protect those whose lives are threatened.”

“Peace is built not with weapons, but through patient listening, dialogue and cooperation, which remain the only means worthy of the human person in resolving differences,” Cardinal Parolin added. “The Holy Father wishes to reiterate the Holy See’s unceasing call for arms to be silenced, for the production and trade of these instruments of death and destruction to be rethought, and for the path of gradual but complete disarmament to be resolutely pursued.”

The above note supplements, highlights, or corrects details in the original source (link above). About CWN news coverage.


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