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  • » 02/18/2005, 00.00

    VATICAN - LEBANON

    Papal telegram to Patriarch Sfeir for Rafik Hariri's death



    Vatican City (AsiaNews) – A "criminal gesture which offends God and men, [who are] created in His image and likeness," said John Paul II about the assassination of Rafik Hariri, the Lebanese magnate turned politician, who died on February 14 in a car bomb attack in downtown Beirut.

    In the telegram of condolences sent by Card Angelo Sodano, Secretary of State of the Holy See, to the Patriarch of Antioch and the Maronites, Card Nasrallah Boutros Sfeir, the Pope said he was "praying ardently for the beloved land of Lebanon" and called on "all the Catholic faithful of Lebanon to a lasting commitment to peace and collaboration with all men of good will in order to build, through dialogue, a future of harmony in the country and among the peoples of the region."

    Here is the full text of the telegram signed by Card  Angelo Sodano, Secretary of State:

    "Following the terrible attack which cost the life of Rafik Hariri, former president of the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Lebanon, as well as of numerous other people, the Holy Father greatly deplores this criminal gesture which offends God and men, created in His image and likeness. While praying ardently for the beloved land of Lebanon, he implores once again God's mercy on the Middle East, which aspires to a just and lasting peace. The Pope invites all the Catholic faithful of Lebanon to a lasting commitment to peace and collaboration with all men of good will in order to build, through dialogue, a future of harmony in the country and among the peoples of the region."

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    See also

    13/02/2007 LEBANON
    Deadly bombs mark eve of Hariri assassination anniversary
    At least 3 dead and 20 wounded in two bomb explosions that tore two buses apart. Lebanon’s majority parties see the attacks as attempt to thwart tomorrow’s commemoration of the second anniversary of the former premier’s murder.

    26/03/2005 LEBANON
    Lebanese government dismisses UN report on Hariri killing
    UN accuses Syria and Lebanon's security services, but Beirut denies any involvement in the case.

    08/06/2005 LEBANON
    Divisions and tensions on the eve of the elections on Mount Lebanon and in the Bekaa


    11/10/2005 LEBANON
    Expectations and contrasting rumours surround UN report on Hariri assassination
    Card Sfeir and Saad Hariri discuss the report. Syria complains of a conspiracy, whilst US Assistant Secretary David Welch arrives in Beirut.

    18/01/2011 LEBANON – VATICAN
    Lebanese Maronite patriarch tenders his resignation to the Pope
    Nasrallah Boutros Sfeir, 90, told the Pope he wanted to be relieved of his duties. Benedict XVI has not yet decided. Various factors explain the decision, the “psychological barrier” of his age, the hostility of some political parties, and issues within the Maronite Church, the most powerful in Lebanon.



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