12/19/2017, 14.35
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Jerusalem at the centre of the meeting between the pope and the Jordanian king

The two stressed the importance of the continued presence of Christians in the Middle East and of "the positive contributions [. . .] they bring to the societies of the region, of which they are an integral part”.

Vatican City (AsiaNews) – The issue of Jerusalem was at the centre of the visit by King Abdullah II of Jordan to the Vatican, where he met first with Pope Francis and then with Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin, who was accompanied by Mgr Paul Gallagher, Secretary for Relations with States.

“The cordial conversations focused above all on the theme of the promotion of peace and stability in the Mideast,” said a statement by the Holy See Press Office.

“[P]articular reference” was made “to the question of Jerusalem and the role of the Hashemite Sovereign as Custodian of the Holy Places. In this context, the commitment was renewed to encourage negotiations among the interested parties, as well as promoting inter-religious dialogue.”

“Finally, the importance of helping Christians remain in the Mideast was brought up, and the positive contributions that they bring to the societies of the region, of which they are an integral part.”

“I cannot but express my deep concern for the situation that has arisen in recent days,” the pope said on 6 December after US President Donald Trump announced his decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel.

At that time, the pontiff also issued “a heartfelt appeal that everyone’s effort respect the status quo of the city, in conformity with the pertinent United Nations Resolutions.”

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