Pope urges status quo, 'wisdom and prudence' for Jerusalem

Pope urges status quo, 'wisdom and prudence' for Jerusalem

Pope urges status quo, 'wisdom and prudence' for Jerusalem

US President Donald Trump will deliver his speech, expecting the US president to "recognize the reality" that Jerusalem has always been the capital of Israel and to declare the move to the US diplomatic mission from Tel Aviv and which for decades remained a reason of contention between Israelis and Palestinians.

"I would like to make a heartfelt appeal for everyone's commitment to respect the city's status, in conformity with the pertinent United Nations Resolutions", he said, as quoted by the Vatican Radio, an official broadcaster.

Pope Francis called for the "respect" of the status quo of Jerusalem and for "wisdom and prudence" to prevail Wednesday, hours before President Trump announced a decision to recognize the city as Israel's capital and move the U.S. Embassy there from Tel Aviv.

The Christian leaders, who include Catholic and Orthodox patriarchs as well as the Franciscan custos of the Holy Land, said Jerusalem could be "shared and fully enjoyed" once a political process helped "liberate the hearts of all people that live within it from the conditions of conflict and destructiveness that they are experiencing".

We ask from you, Mr President, to help us all walk towards more love and a definitive peace, which can not be reached without Jerusalem being for all.

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The status of the city remains disputed.

Archbishop Silvano Tomasi, former Vatican envoy to the U.N.in Geneva, said any move away from the Status Quo in Jerusalem "could have unforeseen consequences".

Pope Francis also had a discussion, regarding the moves being made by the United States, with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas on Tuesday. The Argentine pontiff called for "wisdom and prudence to avoid adding new elements of tension in a world panorama that is already unharmonious and marked by many cruel conflicts".

Before the audience, Pope Francis met with religious leaders from Palestine attending a meeting sponsored by the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue.

In his comments to the group, Francis expressed his hope for "peace and prosperity" for the Palestinian people and called for dialogue that respects the rights of everyone in the Holy Land.

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