Vatican concerned by Australian submarine deal

A French-built submarine in La Montagne, France. Australia ripped up a $90 billion submarine contract with France to sign on to the AUSUK alliance (CNS/Stephane Mahe, Reuters)

Plans by the United States and Great Britain to give Australia the technology needed for nuclear-powered submarines go counter to global disarmament efforts, Cardinal Pietro Parolin said yesterday. Source: CNS.

“The Holy See is against rearmament,” the Vatican secretary of state. told reporters. “Efforts have been and are being made to eliminate nuclear weapons because they are not the way to maintain peace and security in the world, but they create even more danger for peace and conflict.”

“One cannot but be concerned” by the announcement made last week US President Joe Biden, British Prime Minister Boris Johnson and Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison, the cardinal said.

The AUSUK submarine deal has caused tension between and Australia and France, with Australia ripping up a $90 billion submarine contract with the European nation to form the alliance with the US and Britain, ABC News reports. 

It has also sparked concern from south-east Asian nations, leaving Mr Morrison and Australian diplomats to reiterate that Australia would maintain its obligations under the nuclear non-proliferation treaty.

Catholic Religious Australia has also raised concerns about the nuclear-powered submarine deal.

Cardinal Parolin, Cardinal Jean-Claude Hollerich of Luxembourg, president of the Commission of Bishops’ Conferences of the European Union and Cardinal Peter Turkson, president of the Dicastery for Promoting Integral Human Development, were speaking yesterday at a conference on “Christian Values and the Future of Europe” sponsored by the European People’s Party.

Asked about participating in an event sponsored by a political party, the cardinal said that many members of the party describe themselves and their agendas as Christian, therefore it is important that Church representatives have a chance to explain what they see as pressing issues and responsible solutions.

“In Christianity, one does not choose just what one likes or finds comfortable,” he said, but “in Christianity, one must accept everything.”


Vatican's Cardinal Parolin concerned over deal for Australian nuclear-powered subs (CNS via NCR Online)

Catholic Religious urge Australia to commit to culture of peace (Catholic Religious Australia)

Australia seeks to allay South-East Asian concerns over AUKUS nuclear submarine deal (By Stephen Dziedzic, ABC News)

Scott Morrison not planning to discuss submarine deal with French President Emmanuel Macron while at United Nations General Assembly (By Kathryn Diss, ABC News)

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