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Identifier
Created
Classification
Origin
01VATICAN2600
2001-05-11 12:37:00
UNCLASSIFIED
Embassy Vatican
Cable title:  

VATICAN VERBATIM

Tags:   PREL  PHUM  GR  SY  VT  VTPREL 
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This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
						UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 VATICAN 002600 

SIPDIS

DEPT. FOR EUR/WE (VAN CLEVE), EUR/SE, EUR/PD/PA, DRL/IRF,
NEA/ARN

FROM EMBASSY VATICAN/MESSAGE NO. 70/01

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PHUM GR SY PHUM GR SY VT VTPREL
SUBJECT: VATICAN VERBATIM



1. THE MAY 5 - MAY 11 EDITION OF NEWS AND VIEWS FROM
VATICAN CITY.

CONTENTS:
UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 02 VATICA 02600 01 OF 02 122002Z

- VATICAN SAYS POPE'S ILL HEALTH PART OF HIS LEGACY
- VATICAN DECLARES PAPAL VISIT TO GREECE AND SYRIA A SUCCESS
- SWISS GUARD RECRUITING DRIVE VIA INTERNET



--------------------------



--------------------------


VATICAN SAYS POPE'S ILL-HEALTH A "GIFT" TO HUMANITY


--------------------------



--------------------------





2. VATICAN SPOKESMAN, JOAQUIN NAVARRO-VALLS ACKNOWLEDGED
THAT POPE JOHN PAUL II'S HEALTH PROBLEMS CAUSED SOME CONCERN
DURING HIS VISIT TO GREECE, SYRIA AND MALTA. CONFIRMING THE
POPE WAS "EXHAUSTED," NAVARRO-VALLS SAID THE PONTIFF'S
NEUROLOGICAL CONDITION AND HIS AGE TELLS THE WORLD THAT
"THIS BLESSED FATIGUE IS WORTH IT." HE SPECULATED THAT
FUTURE POPES WOULD RECALL THE EXAMPLE OF JOHN PAUL II AND
"THE IMPLICIT MESSAGE THAT, DESPITE THE PAIN AND FATIGUE HE
SUFFERED, THEY WILL SEE HOW MUCH GOD ALLOWED HIM TO
ACCOMPLISH." EMBASSY CONTACTS ACCOMPANYING THE POPE ON HIS
TRIP SAID HE STRUGGLED MORE THAN USUAL BUT THAT HIS TENACITY
AND DRIVE REMAIN INTACT, JOKING AT TIMES WITH THE PRESS
POOL. THE VATICAN SPOKESMAN SAID THE POPE HAS NO PLANS TO
CURTAIL HIS TRAVEL SCHEDULE (UKRAINE IN JUNE, ARMENIA IN
SEPTEMBER, CANADA IN THE SUMMER OF 2002, PLUS TWO MORE
COUNTRIES THAT YEAR). NAVARRO-VALLS SAID THAT THE POPE "WILL
NOT STOP HIS TRAVELS UNTIL GOD CALLS HIM HOME."



--------------------------



--------------------------


VATICAN DECLARES LATEST PAPAL VISITS A RESOUNDING SUCCESS


--------------------------



--------------------------



UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 03 VATICA 02600 01 OF 02 122002Z


3. VATICAN SPOKESMAN JOAQUIN NAVARRO-VALLS DECLARED THE
PAPAL VISIT TO GREECE, SYRIA AND MALTA AS MORE THAN
SATISFACTORY. PARTICULARLY PLEASING FOR THE VATICAN WAS THE
POSITIVE RESPONSE FROM THE GREEK ORTHODOX ARCHBISHOP OF
ATHENS TO THE PONTIFF'S VISIT TO GREECE. ARCHBISHOP
CHRISTODOULOS GAVE THE POPE A COURTEOUS WELCOME, THANKED HIM
FOR HIS VISIT AND PROMISED HIS PRAYERS IN SUPPORT OF THE
REMAINDER OF THE PAPAL TRIP. NAVARRO-VALLS SAID THE POPE DID
NOT EXPECT THE GESTURE AND ATTRIBUTED IT TO "PROVIDENCE."
THE SPOKESMAN CONTINUED THAT POPE JOHN PAUL WAS DELIGHTED
WITH HIS TRIP TO GREECE AND THAT "TWO MONTHS AGO, THIS TRIP
WAS UNTHINKABLE." HE EFFUSED THAT "ONCE AGAIN THE POPE DOES
NOT LET HISTORY HAPPEN BUT HAS DIRECTED IT." WHEN ASKED

WHETHER THE EXPERIENCE IN GREECE AUGURED WELL FOR A LONGED-
FOR PAPAL TRIP TO MOSCOW, NAVARRO-VALLS ANSWERED, "WE'LL
SPEAK ABOUT THAT IN TWO MONTHS." (COMMENT: THE VATICAN WILL
WANT TO WAIT FOR THE OUTCOME OF THE POPE'S VISIT TO UKRAINE
IN JUNE BEFORE MAKING FURTHER COMMENTS ABOUT A VISIT TO
MOSCOW. END COMMENT).



4. NAVARRO-VALLS WAS CAREFUL TO DEPOLITICIZE THE SYRIAN
LEG OF THE POPE'S PILGRIMAGE. NAVARRO-VALLS DISTANCED THE
VATICAN FROM PRESIDENT ASSAD'S REMARKS AT THE WELCOME
CEREMONY. HE SAID THE POPE HAD NO PRIOR KNOWLEDGE OF WHAT
ASSAD WOULD SAY AND THAT THE VATICAN'S RESPONSE WAS
CONTAINED IN THE PONTIFF'S SPEECH "ENUNCIATING INTERNATIONAL
PRINCIPLES THAT APPLY TO ALL." COMMENTING ON THE PONTIFF'S
VISIT TO QUNEITRA, HE SAID THE "SOLE OBJECTIVE AND THE SOLE
REASON WAS TO PRAY FOR PEACE." THE SPOKESMAN ADDED THAT
"PEOPLE OF GOODWILL WILL UNDERSTAND AND APPRECIATE" THE
POPE'S GESTURE. NAVARRO-VALLS SAID THE POPE WAS MOVED BY THE
UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 04 VATICA 02600 01 OF 02 122002Z
RESPECT AND AFFECTION SHOWN HIM BY SYRIAN MOSLEMS, ADDING
THAT JOHN PAUL II WAS AWARE OF THE IMPLICATIONS OF THE FIRST
VISIT BY A POPE TO A MOSQUE. HE SAID POPE JOHN PAUL HOPED IT
WOULD BEAR NEW FRUIT IN THE DIALOGUE BETWEEN THE
CHRISTIANITY AND ISLAM.



--------------------------



--------------------------


SWISS GUARD LOOKING FOR VOLUNTEERS ON THE INTERNET


--------------------------



--------------------------





5. THE SWISS GUARD SWORE IN 26 NEW RECRUITS IN A MAY 6
CEREMONY, HOWEVER THE UNIT IS STILL SHORT SEVEN SOLDIERS.
SWISS GUARD COMMANDER, COLONEL PIUS SEGMULLER SAID THE
GUARDS HAVE BEGUN TO USE THE INTERNET (GARDESUISSE.ORG)
FOR RECRUITMENT. HE NOTED THAT SWITZERLAND'S STRONG ECONOMY
AND SECULARIZATION MAKE IT HARDER TO ATTRACT RECRUITS. "WHEN
THINGS ARE GOING WELL IN OUR COUNTRY, YOUTH FIND WORK EASILY
AND ARE NOT INTERESTED IN COMING TO ROME TO SERVE THE POPE,"
HE SAID. IN THE WAKE OF A 1998 MURDER-SUICIDE SCANDAL, THE
SELECTION PROCESS HAS BEEN TOUGHENED UP. AMONG THE

UNCLASSIFIED

UNCLASSIFIED PTQ1417

PAGE 01 VATICA 02600 02 OF 02 122002Z
ACTION EUR-00

INFO LOG-00 AID-00 CIAE-00 DODE-00 SRPP-00 EB-00 UTED-00
VC-00 H-01 TEDE-00 INR-00 IO-00 L-00 AC-01
NEA-00 NSAE-00 NSCE-00 OIC-02 OMB-01 PA-00 PM-00
PRS-00 ACE-00 P-00 SP-00 SS-00 STR-00 TRSE-00
T-00 USIE-00 PMB-00 PRM-01 DRL-02 G-00 SAS-00
/008W


--------------------------

EAE243 122002Z /75
R 111237Z MAY 01
FM AMEMBASSY VATICAN
TO SECSTATE WASHDC 0000
INFO EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE
AMEMBASSY DAMASCUS
AMEMBASSY TEL AVIV
AMCONSUL JERUSALEM

UNCLAS SECTION 02 OF 02 VATICAN 002600

SIPDIS

DEPT. FOR EUR/WE (VAN CLEVE), EUR/SE, EUR/PD/PA, DRL/IRF,
NEA/ARN

FROM EMBASSY VATICAN/MESSAGE NO. 70/01

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PHUM GR SY PHUM GR SY VT VTPREL

SUBJECT: VATICAN VERBATIM

REQUIREMENTS LISTED ON THE GUARD'S WEB PAGE ARE SWISS
UNCLASSIFIED

PAGE 02 VATICA 02600 02 OF 02 122002Z
CITIZENSHIP, ROMAN CATHOLIC RELIGION AND AN IMPECCABLE
REPUTATION. CANDIDATES MUST HAVE COMPLETED MILITARY SERVICE
IN SWITZERLAND AND BE BETWEEN 19 AND 30 YEARS OF AGE.
SERVICE IN THE SWISS GUARD IS FOR TWO YEARS WITH OPTIONS FOR
RENEWAL. MERANTE

UNCLASSIFIED

>


2001VATICA02600 - Classification: UNCLASSIFIED