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Vatican acknowledges grave risk posed by WMD and nuclear proliferation in the Middle East
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.- At a conference delivered on September 22, during the 48th Conference of The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA,) the Vatican representative, Monsignor Leo Boccardi, said weapons of mass destruction and nuclear proliferation are a threat in the world, but especially in the Middle East.

During his conference, made available by the Vatican's Press office this morning, the Holy See representative said "the acts of violence recently perpetrated in Russia and in other parts of the world gravely offend all humanity.”

“The continued violations of human dignity and the innocent victims of terrorism draw the attention of all to the need to face the causes which underlie such a modern form of barbarism and to deal with them effectively,” he said.

“We must also continue to believe in dialogue as essential to establishing peace and security." He also underscored the "continued threats to peace and stability due to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction," or WMD.

Msgr. Boccardi noted the warnings that nuclear proliferation is on the rise, that there are countries interested in the illicit acquisition of WMD and the "risk that terrorists will gain access to such materials and technology."

Highlighting the rising insecurity in the Middle East, especially in the Holy Land and Iraq, he stressed the need to promote "the peaceful applications of nuclear technologies" as they "can make a significant contribution to responding to the most urgent concerns" such as managing drinking water supplies, crops, fighting malnutrition, treating disease and giving a greater salt tolerance in arid climates.

Read the full Vatican statement at:
http://www.iaea.or.at/About/Policy/GC/GC48/Statements/holysee.pdf

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Catholic Daily

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Lk 9:57-62

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First Reading:: Job 9: 1-12, 14-16
Gospel:: Lk 9: 57-62

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