Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

12/29/2013 (2 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Marks first time Assad had contacted Pope Francis directly; contents of message not divulged

Three years after a disastrous civil war has all but totally destroyed and destabilized his nation, Syrian President Bashar Assad has sent Pope Francis a private message. The Vatican confirmed the delivery of the message, but did not disclose its contents.

It was the first known time Assad has sent the pontiff a message since the start of Syria's civil war in 2011.

It was the first known time Assad has sent the pontiff a message since the start of Syria's civil war in 2011.

Highlights

By Catholic Online (NEWS CONSORTIUM)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

12/29/2013 (2 years ago)

Published in Middle East

Keywords: President Bashar al-Assad, Pope francis, message, Civil war, Vatican


LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - It was the first known time Assad has sent the pontiff a message since the start of Syria's civil war in 2011. The pope has long made overtures to the international community to bring the Syrian conflict to a peaceful end. Pope Francis reiterated his request as recently as Christmas Day.

Vatican sources said the message likely included the Syrian government's position ahead of peace talks due to start on January 22 under U.N. auspices in Geneva. The Vatican has a representative to U.N. organizations in Geneva, as it also has permanent observer status at the U.N.

"The delegation brought a message from President Assad for the Holy Father and illustrated the position of the Syrian government," a statement said. In addition, the Vatican said a delegation headed by Joseph Sweid, a Syrian minister of state, held talks in the Vatican with the pope's secretary of state, Archbishop Pietro Parolin and his foreign minister, Archbishop Dominique Mamberti.

The civil war in Syria has pitted anti-government forces against Assad's military. The number of Syrian refugees fleeing into neighboring countries threatens to destabilize the region. More than 100,000 people have died as a result of the conflict as far away as March of 2011.

The Vatican is also seeking information on the fate of Father Paolo Dall'Oglio, a Jesuit priest who supported the rebels and disappeared in July in eastern Syria.

Pope Francis has made great efforts to make the war in Syria foremost in the world's collective consciousness.

He led a worldwide day of prayer for peace in the country last September and sent a letter to Russian President Vladimir Putin, who was hosting the G20 summit, telling world powers that any military solution in Syria would be a "futile pursuit."

The Russian president was opposed to U.S. President Barack Obama's plan to use air strikes to punish Assad for a chemical weapons attack which the West blamed on the Syrian government. Assad's government denied it was responsible and the air strikes never took place following Syria's agreement to dismantle it chemical weapons.



---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copyright 2016 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for May 2016
Universal:
Respect for Women: That in every country of the world, women may be honored and respected and that their essential contribution to society may be highly esteemed.
Evangelization: Holy Rosary: That families, communities, and groups may pray the Holy Rosary for evangelization and peace.



Comments


More Middle East

'Our warriors are everywhere': ISIS uses CHILDREN to threaten Europe Watch

Image of Brainwashed children train to be the next generation of terrorists (ISIS video).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

ISIS released a threatening video as a warning to Europeans, in which they promised the attacks have only just begun. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The threat is one of many that ISIS has released over the years - but what makes this one especially chilling is ... continue reading


You won't believe how ISIS INCREASES brutal attacks across Iraq and Syria Watch

Image of ISIS continues its rampage across the Middle East (Reuters).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

A car bomb and two smaller blasts exploded in Baghdad, killing at least fourteen adults and children. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - According to Daily Mail, the largest bomb was planted in a parked car.When it detonated, eleven people were killed and at least ... continue reading


'Forgive them': ISIS' brutal and raw torture shared with the world (WARNING: GRAPHIC CONTENT) Watch

Image of Stories of ISIS brutality travel around the world (ISIS propaganda film).

By Matt Hadro (CNA)

The stories were graphic, brutal and raw. New York City, N.Y. (CNA) - One account told of a couple whose children had been captured by ISIS militants. When they answered their door one day, they found a plastic bag on their doorstep. It contained the body parts of ... continue reading


Mad Max style missile strike destroys ISIS suicide bomb truck Watch

Image of ISIS suicide truck destroyed (Youtube).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Footage captured Kurdish fighters destroying a Mad Max-like scrapyard ISIS suicide bomber truck in Syria in an amazing missile explosion. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The footage caught an ISIS suicide bomber truck driving along a dirt road when suddenly a ... continue reading


Deadly tension erupts in Iraq - but DOESN'T involve ISIS? Watch

Image of Religious-fueled fighting has been breaking out among areas free of ISIS.

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Fighting in Iraq leads to 12 dead - but ISIS had nothing to do with the gunfire. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - News of ISIS-related acts of terror including bombings, rape and even threatening social media have splashed headlines for quite a while, but what else ... continue reading


Documents reveal who is buying the most ISIS oil - and you won't guess who it is! Watch

Image of ISIS relies on oil sales to fund its operations. Just who is buying all the oil is surprising.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The Wall Street Journal has published their report on documents released by the U.S. government detailing the raid that killed ISIS's top money man. Abu Sayyaf was the official oil man for ISIS, generating over a million dollars a day for the terror organization, even ... continue reading


Saudi Arabia's $10 billion gambit isn't for friendly purposes Watch

Image of Obama is eager to appease the Saudis, but this may not be in the best interest of the American people.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Saudi Arabia is taking out a $10 billion loan to offset losses caused by collapsed oil prices, a condition the conservative Islamic monarchy has created for itself. Saudi Arabia is beginning to consider changes to its economy that will shift the nation away from oil. ... continue reading


How is the U.S. going to help Christians in danger of genocide? Watch

Image of Christians are in danger of genocide in the Middle East (America).

By Matt Hadro (CNA/EWTN News)

Now that the U.S. has declared that the Islamic State is waging genocide against religious minorities in Iraq and Syria, what will be done to help the victims move forward? LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - That was the question at an April 19 congressionalWill the ... continue reading


ISIS brutally butchers 250 women for refusing to become sex slaves Watch

Image of

By Abigail James (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Two-hundred and fifty women have been brutally slaughtered by the Islamic State for refusing to become sex slaves to the terrorists. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - After refusing to accept the "temporary marriages" and the "sexual jihad" being forced on them the ... continue reading


'I wish it was me not you,' Mother mourns over daughter's lifeless body Watch

Image of Syrian mother grieves for her daughter, who was killed during an air strike in Aleppo (barry Newsa/YouTube).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Air strikes in Syria continue to eat away at the ISIS population - but they have been destroying civilian lives as well. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A mother recently lost her daughter in a missile strike of Aleppo, Syria.The woman was recorded crying and ... continue reading


All Middle East News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

  • Your Daily Inspirational Meme: I fear no evil!
  • Daily Readings for Wednesday, May 04, 2016
  • St. Florian: Saint of the Day for Wednesday, May 04, 2016
  • 'Our warriors are everywhere': ISIS uses CHILDREN to threaten Europe
  • Captain James Cook wreckage discovered!
  • Daily Reading for Thursday, May 5th, 2016 HD Video
  • St. Matthew HD Video

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Acts 17:15, 22--18:1
15 Paul's escort took him as far as Athens, and went back with ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 148:1-2, 11-12, 13, 14
1 Alleluia! Praise Yahweh from the heavens, praise him in the ... Read More

Gospel, John 16:12-15
12 I still have many things to say to you but they would be too much for ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for May 4th, 2016 Image

St. Florian
May 4: The St. Florian commemorated in the Roman ... Read More