27 Jun, 2015
VATICAN CITY: The Vatican on Friday signed a historic first accord with Palestine, two years after officially recognizing it as a state. The accord, a treaty covering the activities of he Church in the parts of the holy land under Palestinian control, was the first since the Vatican recognized Palestine as a state in February 2013.
The product of 15 years of discussions, the agreement was finalized in principle last month and bitterly condemned then by Israel as a setback for the peace process. Palestinian foreign minister Riad Al-Maliki, said at Friday’s signing ceremony that it would “not have been possible without the blessing of Pope Francis for our efforts to reach it.”