Dublin, Ireland, Jan 4, 2004 / 22:00 pm
According to classified Irish government documents, four Catholic countries made repeated proposals to place Jerusalem under Roman Catholic control in the late 1940s, after the State of Israel was created, to ensure access to the Holy City.
However, the proposals never really got off the ground and were finally dropped after the Vatican made the prudent decision to remain uninvolved and to avoid the risk of “promoting further disturbance in Palestine,” say Irish government documents.
The AFP reported that Spain made the first proposal after the United Nations General Assembly voted in November 1947 to partition Palestine. The UN resolution, which also stipulated that Jerusalem would be established as a "corpus seperatum" under a special international regime, was passed by 33 votes to 13, with 10 abstentions.
Italy and Portugal joined Spain in its proposal, and the three countries solicited Ireland to support the plan. Details of these closed-door talks were revealed recently in documents made public by the National Archives in Dublin.