.- Cardinal Jorge Urosa Savino of Caracas is calling on Venezuelans to work for peace and expressing his rejection of any talk of war by President Hugo Chavez who continues to threaten of possible conflicts with the United States and Colombia.
“Venezuelans are a sovereign and courageous nation, but we love peace. And we reject any hypothetical or real attack on our national sovereignty, as well as the possibility of war with any Latin American country,” the cardinal said during Mass for the World Day of Peace.
He reiterated his call on the governments of Venezuela and Colombia to overcome their differences peacefully, because an armed confrontation would only cause “very serious harm to our respective nations, especially to those who live along the borders.”
Cardinal Urosa stressed that working for peace is an unavoidable commitment, especially for Christians, and therefore it is part of the Church’s mission in the world and in Venezuela.
“Working for peace in Venezuela, as well as protecting the environment and creation, also entails struggling to overcome poverty and any form of exclusion. It also entails overcoming intolerance, promoting open, realistic and sincere dialogue in order to find unity,” he said.
For this reason, he called on officials to directly confront crime and drug trafficking and everything that violates the right to life of Venezuelans, by rooting out the causes and carrying out justice in accord with the law.
He also referred to political tolerance and said it was an essential element of democracy, in order for there to be true social peace, in which “the opinions of others are respected, as stipulated by the Constitution and our laws.”