Mideast needs two-state solution, Pope says in Christmas message

FAN Editor
Pope Francis waves as he leads the
Pope Francis waves as he leads the “Urbi et Orbi” (to the city and the world) message from the balcony overlooking St. Peter’s Square at the Vatican December 25, 2017. REUTERS/Alessandro Bianchi

December 25, 2017

By Philip Pullella

VATICAN CITY (Reuters) – Pope Francis used his Christmas message on Monday to call for a negotiated two-state solution to end the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, after U.S. President Donald Trump stoked regional tensions with his recognition of Jerusalem as Israel’s capital.

“Let us pray that the will to resume dialogue may prevail between the parties and that a negotiated solution can finally be reached, one that would allow the peaceful coexistence of two states within mutually agreed and internationally recognized borders,” Francis said.

It was the second time that the pope has spoken out publicly about Jerusalem since Trump’s decision on Dec. 6. On that day, Francis called for the city’s “status quo” to be respected, lest new tensions in the Middle East further inflame world conflicts.

(Reporting By Philip Pullella; Editing by Gareth Jones)

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