Vatican denies it will recognize East Jerusalem (REUTERS) Reporting By Philip Pullella, editing by Diana Abdallah VATICAN CITY 06/12/12 11:31am EDT)
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(Reuters) - The Vatican said on Tuesday that an economic agreement it
is negotiating with Israel will not mean the de facto recognition of
Israel´s annexation of East Jerusalem.
The Vatican was responding to reports in Palestinian media that the
deal, which involves tax status and other financial issues concerning
Church properties in the Holy Land, would result in a recognition of
Israel´s control of East Jerusalem.
Palestinians want East Jerusalem to be the capital of an eventual
homeland. Israel annexed East Jerusalem in the 1967 war and in 1980
declared the city its "united and eternal" capital. World powers have
not recognized the annexation.
"The agreement on which we have been working concerns the life,
activities and fiscal regime of the Catholic Church in Israel," said
Monsignor Ettore Balestrero, a Vatican diplomat who is negotiating
"In the agreement, we wished to steer clear of territorial disputes.
We will not speak about East Jerusalem or places in the West Bank,"
he told Vatican Radio.
Both sides have been negotiating the agreement for years and there is
no indication when they will reach an accord. (© Thomson Reuters
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