DAILY CATHOLIC    MONDAY     August 23, 1999     vol. 10, no. 158

NEWS & VIEWS
from a CATHOLIC perspective

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US FAILS TO DETER PAPAL VISIT TO IRAQ

        NEW YORK (CWNews.com) - The Clinton administration's efforts to convince Pope John Paul II not to visit Iraq failed after a series of diplomatic meetings this spring, according to the Wall Street Journal on Friday.

        The newspaper reported that envoy Thomas Pickering and a senior White House aide made separate trips to Rome this spring to meet with Vatican officials. The Holy Father has publicly stated his desire to visit Iraq, the birthplace of the biblical patriarch Abraham. He is expected to visit the country this fall, perhaps during a planned trip to Asia, but Iraq has yet to formally extend an invitation to the Holy Father.

        The US officials told their Vatican counterparts that no head of state has visited Iraq since the Gulf War, and a visit by the Pope could lend credibility to Saddam Hussein. They also warned of a security risk. The Holy Father has been a vocal critic of the UN sanctions against Iraq because of their effect on the people of the country.


Articles provided through Catholic World News and Church News at Noticias Eclesiales and International Dossiers, Daily Dispatches and Features at ZENIT International News Agency. CWN, NE and ZENIT are not affiliated with the Daily CATHOLIC but provide this service via e-mail to the Daily CATHOLIC Monday through Friday.

August 23, 1999       volume 10, no. 158
NEWS & VIEWS

DAILY CATHOLIC

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