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Vatican     CARDINAL SAYS PEACE SUMMIT NOT THE BASIS FOR A RELIGIOUS U.N.
While generally positive about the event, Cardinal Francis Arinze, President of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue has returned to Rome with serious reservations about the meeting.
    He told Catholic News Service: "It is not clear who are the people behind it, and why."
    During the meeting, it emerged that media baron Ted Turner was a prime mover in the event's organisation. Turner used the meeting to express bitterness about his Christian upbringing, emphasising the lack of tolerance within some Christian churches.
    Cardinal Arinze voiced reservations, however, about plans of the organisers to set up a permanent International Advisory Council of Religious and Spiritual Leaders that, organisers said, can "serve as a resource for the UN secretary-general and the UN system in its conflict prevention and resolution efforts."
    "I do not consider this meeting the competent body to set up a council of religious representatives that might advise the United Nations or be the ones to be consulted," Cardinal Arinze said.
    He added that the desire of people at major gatherings to establish something permanent was "not a bad tendency in itself," but that deciding who would represent the various participating groups was a "delicate" matter.
   
CNS
   
5 Sep 00



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