Tuesday, October 25, 2011

THE HOLY SEE AND LIBYA AFTER THE DEATH OF COLONEL GADAFFI

Considering the events of the past week regarding the death of Colonel Gadaffi and all of the secular publicity, I thought it would be helpful to post this message from the Vatican, in case you have not seen this.

Let us pray for all the people of Libya!

"VATICAN CITY, 21 OCT 2011 (VIS) -  Given below is the text of an English-language note published yesterday  afternoon by the Holy See Press Office on the subject of the Holy See and  Libya following the death of Colonel Gadaffi.

  "The news of the death  of Colonel Muammar Gaddafi marks the end of a much too long and tragic phase  of a brutal struggle to bring down a harsh and oppressive regime.

  "This dramatic event  obliges us yet again to reflect on the immense toll of human suffering which  accompanies the affirmation and collapse of any system which is not based on  the respect and dignity of the human person, but rather on the prevailing  affirmation of power.

  "It is hoped now that  the Libyan people might be spared further violence due to a spirit of  revenge, and that the new leaders can undertake as soon possible efforts  necessary for bringing peace and rebuilding in a spirit of solidarity, based  on justice and the rule of law. May the international community also be  committed to generously helping in the rebuilding of the nation.

  "For its own part, the  small Catholic community will continue to offer its own witness and service  to all people, especially in the charitable and health fields. The Holy See  will assist the Libyan people with the instruments available to it in the  field of international relations with a spirit of promoting justice and  peace.

  "In this regard, it is  necessary to keep in mind that it is a constant practice that when the Holy  See establishes diplomatic relations, it recognises States and not  governments. For this reason the Holy See has not proceeded in establishing a  formal recognition of the National Transitional Council (CNT) as the  government of Libya.  Given that the CNT is now acting effectively as the government in Tripoli, the Holy See  considers it the legitimate representative of the Libyan people, in  conformity with international law.

  "The Holy See has  already had contacts with the new Libyan authorities. Firstly, the  Secretariat of State, which has the responsibility for the diplomatic  relations of the Holy See, has been in contact with the Libyan Embassy to the  Holy See following the political changes in Tripoli. During his recent participation at  the General Assembly of the United Nations, Archbishop Dominique Mamberti,  secretary for Relations with States, had the opportunity to speak to  Abdurrahman M. Shalgham, permanent representative of Libya to the  United Nations. More recently, Archbishop Tommaso Caputo, apostolic nuncio to  Libya, who is based in Malta, travelled to Tripoli for a three-day visit (from 2-4  October) in which he met Mahmoud Jibril, prime minister of the CNT. Archbishop  Caputo was also received by the minister for foreign affairs.

  "During these various  meetings the importance of diplomatic relations between the Holy See and Libya was  affirmed by both sides. The Holy See renewed its support for the Libyan  people and for the transition. The Holy See wished the new authorities every  success in their rebuilding the country. On their own behalf, the leaders of  the new Libya expressed their appreciation for the Holy Father's humanitarian  appeals and the efforts of the Church in Libya through its services in  hospitals and help centres run by thirteen religious communities (six in  Tripolitania and seven in Cirenaica)".

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