Archbishop Celestino Migliore, Holy See permanent observer to the United Nations, spoke yesterday before the Special Political and Decolonization Committee on Item 75, the UN Relief and Works Agency for Palestine Refugees in the Near East (UNRWA). He said: "We come to this forum once again to review the delivery of human services (to refugees) amid an unending cycle of violence and terrorism, military action and reaction, in effect a series of retaliations which begets more violence. ... A realistic analysis of the situation finds that there is a lot of peacemaking rhetoric but very little political will shown in the resolution of differences." He urged the "international community to challenge the Israeli and Palestinian leaderships to negotiate in good faith," in order to create "opportunities for reconciliation, forgiveness, compromise or collaboration." In particular, he underscored the difficulties of "the refugee population so adversely affected by this 'undeclared war'." Archbishop Migliore spoke of the multifaceted work of the Pontifical Mission for Palestine, and then addressed the question of the Holy City of Jerusalem, saying this is part of any solution to the Middle East situation. He renewed the Holy See's call for "'internationally guaranteed provisions to ensure the freedom of religion and of conscience of its inhabitants, as well as permanent, free and unhindered access to the Holy Places by the faithful of all religions and nationalities'." He concluded: "It is painful to see that a land once entrusted with a message of love, life, brotherhood and peace, called by many a Holy Land, in these times sends a very different message to the world, one of division, destruction and death. The family of nations must challenge all the actors concerned to renew their efforts to bring peace to the region." Source: VIS
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