Jan 3, 2016

Vatican Fully Recognizes 'Palestine' State as Landmark Treaty Takes Effect

Mahmoud Abbas
Pope Francis (R) embraces Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas at Saint Peter's square in the Vatican City, May 17, 2015 (Tony Gentile / Reuters)

(ISRAEL HAYOM)—An agreement signed last year making official the Vatican's de facto 2012 recognition of "Palestine," has come into effect, the Holy See said on Saturday.

The Vatican signed its first treaty with the "State of Palestine" last June when it called for moves to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and backed a two-state solution.

"The Holy See and the State of Palestine have notified each other that the procedural requirements for [the accord's] entry into force have been fulfilled," the Vatican said in a statement on Saturday....

Israel has previously called the Vatican accord a hasty move that could damage prospects for advancing a peace agreement and impact its future diplomatic relations with the Vatican.

But the Holy See under Pope Francis is eager to have a greater diplomatic role in the Middle East, from where many Christians have fled because of conflicts in Syria, Iraq and other countries....

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