to This Article With REAL AUDIO -- Get
QUESTIONS: Gapfill - Answers:
Multiple Choice - Answers
Pope Says War in Iraq Threatens Fate of Humanity
22 Mar 2003, 20:20 UTC
Pope John Paul II says the war against Iraq is threatening the
fate of humanity. It was the first papal statement since the
outbreak of U.S.-led hostilities against Baghdad.
Speaking to television journalists in the Vatican, the pope
said weapons can never solve the problems of mankind. At this
time, the pope said, it is ever more urgent to proclaim, with
a strong a decisive voice, that peace alone is the way to construct
a more just and united society.
The head of the Roman Catholic Church said peace is a gift
of God and a humble and constant achievement by men.
The Vatican expressed its deep sorrow soon after the start
of bombing by U.S. forces. The Pope's words Saturday were his
first since the outbreak of the war, which he described as a
threat to the fate of humanity.
In recent weeks the 82-year-old pontiff has spoken out strongly
against the U.S.-led campaign in Iraq. He made numerous calls
for peace and for a negotiated solution to the crisis. In his
efforts to prevent a war he appealed personally to British Prime
Minister Tony Blair and met with Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister
The pope has said there is no legal or moral justification
for military action and has expressed his concern that it will
harm relations between Christians and Muslims. In a diplomatic
drive to try to avert the conflict, the pope also dispatched
Vatican representatives to Baghdad and Washington.