(Vatican Radio) The Bilateral Permanent Working Commission between the Holy See and the State of Israel met on Wednesday in Jerusalem.
The parties were continuing negotiations on Article 10 Paragraph 2 of the Fundamental Agreement between the Holy See and the State of Israel of 1993.
After their meeting, the Commission issued a statement declaring the “delegations discussed matters of common interest and explored new opportunities for cooperation.”
Article 10 of the Fundamental Agreement states: § 1. The Holy See and the State of Israel jointly reaffirm the right of the Catholic Church to property.
§ 2. Without prejudice to rights relied upon by the Parties: a) The Holy See and the State of Israel will negotiate in good faith a comprehensive agreement, containing solutions acceptable to both Parties, on unclear, unsettled and disputed issues, concerning property, economic and fiscal matters relating to the Catholic Church generally, or to specific Catholic Communities or institutions.
b) For the purpose of the said negotiations, the Permanent Bilateral Working Commission will appoint one or more bilateral subcommissions of experts to study the issues and make proposals.
c) The Parties intend to commence the aforementioned negotiations within three months of entry into force of the present Agreement, and aim to reach agreement within two years from the beginning of the negotiations.
d) During the period of these negotiations, actions incompatible with these commitments shall be avoided.
The full statement issued by the Bilateral Commission is below:
The Bilateral Permanent Working Commission between the Holy See and the State of Israel met today, 18th January 2017, in Jerusalem, at the Plenary level, to continue negotiations pursuant to the Fundamental Agreement between the Holy See and the State of Israel of 1993, Art. 10 paragraph 2.
The meeting was headed by Mr. Tzachi HANEGBI, Minister for Regional Cooperation of the State of Israel, and by Mgr. Antoine CAMILLERI, Undersecretary for the Holy See's Relations with States. The Plenary welcomed the progress accomplished at the working level regarding the negotiations pursuant to Art. 10 paragraph 2, and is pleased that they continue in a thoughtful and constructive atmosphere. The Plenary further acknowledges the work of the Ministry of Justice regarding the implementation of the 1997 Bilateral Legal Personality Agreement. The Parties have agreed on future steps, in view of the next Plenary meeting scheduled for March 2017, in Vatican City. Following the BPWC meeting, the Holy See and the State of Israel held a bilateral dialogue at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The delegations discussed matters of common interest and explored new opportunities for cooperation.
Delegation of the Holy See:
Mgr. Antoine CAMILLERI, Undersecretary for Relations with States of the Holy See, Head of
H.E. Arch. Giuseppe LAZZAROTTO, Apostolic Nuncio in Israel;
H.E. Arch. Antonio FRANCO, Apostolic Nuncio;
H.E. Bishop Giacinto-Boulos MARCUZZO, Latin Patriarchal Vicar for Israel;
Fr. Lorenzo LORUSSO, Undersecretary of the Congregation for the Oriental Churches of the Holy
Mgr. Ionut Paul STREJAC, Desk officer, Secretary of State of the Holy See;
Mgr. Marco FORMICA, Deputy Head of Mission, Apostolic Nunciature in Israel;
Mr. Henry AMOROSO, Principal Legal Adviser;
Fr. Jacek JASZTAL O.F.M., Vicar of the Custody of the Holy Land;
Fr. Ibrahim FALTAS O.F.M., Custody of the Holy Land;
Sr. Kathy ZIMMERMANN F.S.E., Secretary of the Delegation.
Delegation of the State of Israel:
Mr. Tzachi HANEGBI, Minister for Regional Cooperation;
Mrs. Emi PALMOR, Director General, Ministry of Justice;
Mr. Ehud KEINAN, External Advisor & Head of Israeli working level team;
Mr. Akiva TOR, Head of World Jewish and World Religions Affairs Bureau (MFA);
Dr. Joseph DRAZNIN, Advisor for the Minister for Regional Cooperation;
Mrs. Sharon REGEV, Director of the World Religions Affairs Department (MFA);
Mrs. Tamar KAPLAN, Principal Deputy Legal Advisor and Director of the Diplomatic and Civil
Law Department (MFA);
Mrs. Karin DOSORETZ, Diplomatic and Civil Law Department (MFA);
Mr. Itai APTER, Office of the Deputy Attorney General (International Law) (MOJ);
Mr. Moshe GOLAN, External Advisor;
Mrs. Anat EILON GANOR, Senior Advisor to the Chief Economist (MOF);
Mr. Amir HARAN, Senior Advisor to the Director General (MOJ);
Mr. Gilad ATLACEVITZ, World Religions Affairs Department (MFA).