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  • mediazioni e arbitrati, risoluzione alternativa delle controversie e servizi di mediazione e arbitrato


    » 03/27/2007, 00.00

    VATICAN - ISRAEL

    Israeli Delegation will not keep appointment at the Vatican

    Arieh Cohen

    The "plenary" session had been planned for longtime. They were working to a “comprehensive agreement” on legal and fiscal security for the Church in Israel. The process was started by the magnanimity and trust of John Paul II. Disappointment and pain among Church officials.

    Tel Aviv (AsiaNews) - The Delegation of the State of Israel, expected at the Vatican on Thursday 29 March, has decided not to come, and has communicated this only a very few days before the scheduled appointment. The news was soon widely known among media people in Rome, who cover the Vatican, since several key journalists had been invited to meet the Head of the Israeli Delegation on Thursday evening, following the negotiations in the Vatican, and have now had to be told by the Israeli Authorities that Israel had decided not to send the Delegation.

    In the absence so far of any official comment by the Holy See, it is not yet possible to evaluate the gravity of the damage inflicted on the bilateral relationship by this unusual move, which follows a long list of appointments made and later cancelled or ignored by the Israeli side - although so far only at a "lower" level than this one.

    The meeting, now cancelled by Israel, of the full teams of negotiators, which was to be held in the Vatican on Thursday 29 March - the first one at this level in five years -  was to be yet another attempt to conclude the negotiating round that began as far back as 11 March 1999. In the meantime the negotiations continued, sporadically, at the "working level."

    As is well known, their purpose is to work out a "comprehensive agreement" on all tax and property matters, which would give the Church in Israel legal and fiscal security. In practical terms, the Catholic Church wishes to see re-confirmed the historic tax exemptions that she already possessed at the time that Israel came into being, in 1948. Likewise the Church in Israel hopes for the return of some confiscated ecclesiastical properties, for example, the church-shrine in Caesarea, which was confiscated in the 1950's and later razed to the ground. In particular too, it is important for the security of Catholic sacred places owned by the Church, to ensure that any legal disputes concerning them should be decided by the courts, according to law ("due process") and never, as is possible today, by politicians, in purely discretionary fashion.

    In the Church in Israel there was much expectation for the results of the meeting, which Israel has now abruptly cancelled, and the  prospect of the first meeting of the "Plenary" of the negotiating teams, after a five year interval was cause for cautious optimism, which has now been replaced by just one more disappointment.

    Indeed, a positive outcome to the talks could have strengthened confidence in the wisdom of the Church's choice to go ahead and sign the 1993 "Fundamental Agreement" with the State of Israel , and to establish with it full diplomatic relations only months later, even while leaving matters of decisive importance to later negotiations and agreements.

    The rationale for that decision was described to AsiaNews  (before learning of the unilateral cancellation) by the Franciscan jurist, Fr. David-Maria A. Jaeger, expert on Church-State relations in Israel: "It was believed best to to go ahead, and demonstrate, right at the start, with magnanimity, the Church's own good faith, and with it, unreserved trust in the other Party to carry out its own obligations under international law. There was the hope-full expectation that magnanimity and trust on the part of the Church would call forth corresponding trust and magnanimity on the part of the other side. It was a courageously generous decision by the Servant of God Pope John Paul II, and I, for my part, continue to pray and hope that he will be proved to have been right all along". Asked by AsiaNews for his views on the unilateral cancellation, Father Jaeger limited himself to expressing "incredulity" and "pain," and declined to comment any further.

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    See also

    17/03/2006 israel - vatican
    Israel's war against the hospice of the Daughters of Charity continues

    For decades the government and private business have been trying to illegally expropriate a building that in Jerusalem is home to poor children, the elderly and people with disabilities in order to build cinemas and entertainment centres. Catholic public opinion around the world is called on to become mobilized.



    08/06/2009 ISRAEL - VATICAN
    Ministry for Finance seizes Church funds. Holy See-Israeli negotiations at stake
    Only weeks after Benedict XVI’s visit to Israel, Tax Chief Yehezkel Abrahamoff, has seized church funds to force ecclesial institutions to pay tax, instead of waiting for the outcome of negotiations on the fiscal statute of the Church in Israel. A personal initiative or a change in the policy of the Netanyahu government? Possibile problems for schools and hospitals.

    19/02/2009 ISRAEL - VATICAN
    Hope for a conclusion in Holy See-Israel talks before Pope's arrival in Holy Land
    The Bilateral Commission met yesterday. The joint communiqué speaks of “progress” towards an agreement in the making since 1999.

    23/04/2009 VATICAN - ISRAEL
    “Meaningful progress” in bilateral talks between the Holy See and Israel
    After meeting today, the bilateral commission issued an upbeat press release. Talks between the two sides have been ongoing since 1999. The commission’s next meeting is scheduled for 30 April in Israel, just before the Pope’s visit. Mgr Pietro Parolin and Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon will be present.

    17/05/2007 VATICAN - ISRAEL
    Holy See and Israel to hold plenary meeting on May 21
    Originally scheduled for last March and then cancelled, it is the first such meeting in five years. An expert, Fr David M. Jaeger, discusses it.



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