Pope Francis with Crown Prince Muhammad bin Zayed of Abu Dhabi, President of the United Arab Emirates
(Rome) On Tuesday the Lebanese newspaper L'Orient-Le Jour published the news that the United Arab Emirates and the Vatican are jointly launching a new peace initiative.
The Emir of Abu Dhabi and President of the United Arab Emirates, Muhammad bin Zayid Al Nahyan, wants to bring together Russian President Vladimir Putin and Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy "at the request of Pope Francis". L'Orient-Le Jour relies on "exclusive information from Western and Arab diplomats.”
Pope Francis has been working closely with Muhammad bin Zayid in the field of Interreligious Dialogue for several years. The Emir hosted a meeting in Abu Dhabi in February 2019 where Pope Francis signed the infamous document on human fraternity. That, as the Austrian philosopher Josef Seifert put it, contains the "heresy of heresies."
The Emir is also the initiator and financier of the new temple complex in Abu Dhabi, which combines a synagogue, a church and a mosque side by side in one complex. Critics see the so-called house of the Abrahamic family as a building block on the way to a world religion.
The fact is that Pope Francis and Crown Prince Muhammad bin Zayed are united in the "spirit of Abu Dhabi". This also explains why Pope Francis is looking at the Arab world in his “peace offensive”, as he recently told a Spanish newspaper on World Youth Day in Lisbon.
So far, Vatican diplomacy has been discreetly mediating on the issue of prisoner exchanges and the repatriation of Ukrainian children who had been evacuated by Russia from the conquered territories.
At yesterday's first general audience after the summer break, Francis opposed those who plan wars "in certain secret rooms" to the peaceful gathering of young people from all over the world and all nations at World Youth Day. World Youth Day showed "that another world is possible: a world of brothers and sisters, in which the flags of all peoples fly together, side by side, without hatred, without fear, without partitions, without weapons".
In the eyes of Pope Francis, Abu Dhabi could be the first stage for peace negotiations between Russia and Ukraine. Muhammad bin Zayid, the head of state of the United Arab Emirates and Emir of Abu Dhabi, wants to try to bring together the heads of state of the two warring parties at the COP 28 climate change conference, which will be held in Dubai from November 30 to December 12. According to the Lebanese daily, this is happening at the express “request of Pope Francis”.
Meanwhile, Cardinal Matteo Zuppi, the Pope's special envoy for the Ukraine conflict, is preparing to visit Beijing. The Holy See sees both Washington and Beijing as key to easing the conflict.
The framework for the meeting between Putin and Zelenskyj in the course of the COP 28 world climate conference could be the "peace meeting of religious leaders" that the Vatican is preparing. Cardinal Secretary of State Pietro Parolin is the coordinator. He said that it was important to offer a "neutral place" for the Putin-Zelenskyi meeting, which should also be outside the Vatican.
As part of this meeting of religious leaders, a visit by Pope Francis to the temple complex of the Abrahamic Family House is also commemorated in the Vatican.
According to the plans, Pope Francis could open the meeting. The details of the implementation were transferred to Crown Prince Muhammad bin Zayed. Yesterday, Francis stressed that this is exactly why he went to Fatima during his stay in Portugal to "pray for peace".
Text: Giuseppe Nardi
Image: VaticanMedia (screenshot)
Trans: Tancred vekron99@hotmail.Com