Vatican brings its message for peace in Ukraine to Beijing

by | Sep 15, 2023 | Religion

VATICAN CITY (RNS) — Pope Francis’ envoy for peace in Ukraine, the Italian Cardinal Matteo Zuppi, made history on Thursday when he became the first Vatican prelate to meet with Chinese officials in Beijing. The meeting was the latest step in the pope’s diplomatic efforts to put an end to the Russian-Ukrainian conflict.An experienced diplomat and the president of the Italian Bishops’ Conference, Zuppi met with the Chinese Special Representative for Eurasian Affairs, Li Hui, who was charged with promoting Beijing’s 12-point peace plan for Ukraine. Hui was also the Chinese ambassador to Russia and has traveled to Moscow and Kyiv.
“The meeting, which was open and cordial, focused on the war in Ukraine and its dramatic consequences, underlining the need to join efforts to favor dialogue and find paths leading to peace,” read a Vatican statement on Thursday (Sept. 14).
The Vatican and Chinese representatives also discussed the question of food security and underscored the need to restore Ukraine’s grain exports to countries at risk of food shortages, the statement said.
The Chinese government has not published any official statement on the meeting, and Chinese Catholic outlets have made no mention of it. The Vatican and Beijing recently renewed a controversial secret deal on the appointment of bish …

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