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Archbishop Paul Gallagher says a two-state solution requires time and understanding. (Vatican News)

The Vatican’s foreign minister says recent events only reaffirm the Holy See’s position on a two-state solution for Israel and Palestine. Source: Rome Reports.

“I think many people, although recognising that it is a very, very difficult call, realise that it’s probably the only option on the table at the moment,” said Archbishop Paul Richard Gallagher, Vatican Secretary for Relations with States.

“And, as we know, if there is the political will to bring this about, it can happen. Now, that’s a big, big call and we know that. But this situation is so grave, what we have already witnessed is so terrible that we need to do something like this.”

In an interview with Rome Reports, the archbishop said a two-state solution needed time and that it was not about outlining a predefined plan.

He said it is key that, little by little, the parties involved in the conflict reach understandings on the issues they can agree on. It would be a type of small-step diplomacy, as the Vatican has applied in other situations.

“I don’t think it’s sort of like a magic bullet that we pull out. It may be something that has to exist on paper, maybe with some degree of understanding, and then to be worked out,” he explained.

“As, for example, within this two-state solution, in our version of it, if you like, we don’t go as far as to decide if Jerusalem is going to be the capital of Israel [or] the capital of Palestine.”

Speaking about Ukraine, Archbishop Gallagher reiterated the Vatican’s position of working to end the violence.

“The position of the Holy See is quite clear and the Holy Father has expressed this on numerous occasions: that the Holy See does not wish and will actively work to avoid any escalation of this war.

“So I think that although we would be encouraging all parties to take such measures to de-escalate the situation, at the same time, we have to be realistic about the situation on the ground today and the fact that this is proving to be an extremely difficult, bloody and costly conflict.”


Vatican foreign minister affirms stance on two-state solution (Rome Reports via The Catholic Weekly)