.- Earlier today the Vatican announced that Jean Ping, foreign minister of Gabon met with Cardinal Secretary of State Angelo Sodano and other Vatican officials to discuss the need for reform in the United Nations. Holy See Press Director Joaquin Navarro-Valls said in an announcement that, Ping, president of the 59th General Assembly of the U.N. Organization, this morning, “paid a visit to Cardinal Secretary of State Angelo Sodano. Archbishop Giovanni Lajolo, secretary for Relations with Sates, and Desire Koumba, ambassador of Gabon to the Holy See, also attended the meeting.”
"Mr. Ping”, Navarro-Valls said, “first of all extended, both on the part of the U.N. and on his own, respectful and cordial greetings and best wishes to the Holy Father.”
"During the course of the discussions,” the announcement continued, “the prospects for reform of the U.N., currently at an advanced stage of preparation, were examined, as was the still-worrying situation of various African countries, with particular reference to the work of the African Union.”
Some attention was also given to certain aspects concerning the collaboration between Church and State in Gabon, where a 1997 framework agreement between the Holy See and the Gabonese Republic is in force."