07/27/2011, 00.00
VATICAN-MALAYSIA
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Diplomatic relations established between the Holy See and Malaysia

The official announcement issued today follows the visit by the Prime Minister Najib bin Abdul Razak on July 18. Catholics are about 3% of the population in this country.
Vatican City (AsiaNews) - The Holy See and Malaysia, "desirous of promoting bonds of mutual friendship," have mutually agreed to establish diplomatic relations. The announcement, released today by the Vatican, confirmed what had been established on 18 July during the visit of Prime Minister Najib Razak Bin Abdul with Benedict XVI (pictured) and states that the relationship will be at the highest level with an Apostolic Nuncio of the Holy See and Embassy from Malaysia.

A statement issued on that occasion spoke of "cordial talks" in which "the positive developments in the bilateral relations were mentioned and it was agreed to establish diplomatic relations between Malaysia and the Holy See." " he political and social situation in the world and on the Asian continent was reviewed, with particular reference to the importance of intercultural and interreligious dialogue for the promotion of peace, justice and greater understanding between peoples."

In the majority Muslim country, Christians account for just over 6% (half Catholic) of over 27 million inhabitants.

Malaysia is the 179th State which has diplomatic relations with the Holy See. The States are joined by the PLO, the European Community and the Order of Malta.

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