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Vatican`s Foreign Minister Lauds Indonesia`s Religious Tolerance
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Friday, 26 February, 2016 | 11:50 WIB
Vatican`s Foreign Minister Lauds Indonesia`s Religious Tolerance

TEMPO.CO, London - Vatican’s Foreign Minister Mgr. Paul Richard Galagher has conveyed his appreciation toward Indonesian people tolerance, despite minor incidents of intolerance.

The message was conveyed by Foreign Minister Paul Richard Galagher to the new Indonesian Ambassador to The Holy See, Antonius Agus Sriyono at the office of the Vatican’s Secretariat of State, said Third Secretary of Indonesian Ambassador to Vatican, Sturmius Teofanus Bate, on Thursday, as reported by Antara.

The meeting between Ambassador Agus Sriyono with Foreign Minister Mgr. Paul Richard Galagher, which was held for 45 minutes, discussed issues of interfaith dialogue, 2017 Asian Youth Day, Palestine Independence, Papua and LGBT.

During the discussion on interfaith dialogue, Mgr. Galagher conveyed his appreciation of Indonesian people tolerance, despite minor incidents of intolerance.

When discussing about Asian Youth Day, the new Indonesian Ambassador to The Holy See, Antonius Agus Sriyono conveyed his expectation to Pope Franciscus to attend the event which will be attended by around 29 Asian countries. Mgr. Galagher said that he would convey the message to the State Secretary, Cardinal Pietro Parolin.

On the occasion, Ambassador Antonius Agus Sriyono raised the issue of Indonesia’s stance in the resolution of Palestine independence wherein Indonesia has share the same policy with The Holy See, namely the two state solution.

With regard to Papua, The Holy See’s policy has not changed as it continues to recognize Indonesia’s sovereignty over Papua. However, Mgr. Galagher hoped that the Indonesian Government could give more attention to the issues of freedom of political activity, prosperity and respect to human rights.

Ambassador Sriyono explained that the Indonesian Government has thus far given huge attention to Papua’s development through, among others, granting of special autonomy, infrastructure development and improving education in Papua.

On Vatican’s policy regarding LGBT phenomenon, Mons. Galagher explained that Vatican sees it as two issues. First, LGBT as sexual orientation and LGBT as a movement. As a sexual orientation, Vatican respects LGBT’s personal rights as humans and they need to be treated.

LGBT as a movement is contradictory to the teachings of the church, wherein the Catholic Church categorizes it as a sin.

According to Sturmius, the meeting of Indonesian Ambassador to Vatican with Vatican’s Foreign Minister was held for only two days after Ambassador Sriyono arrived in Rome to commence his duty as Indonesian Ambassador to Vatican.



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