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World Bishops condemn terrorism

At their month-long Synod in Rome concludes, Bishops from around the world issued a sharp condemnation of terrorism coupled with a moral denunciation of "gross inequalitites: between nations.

The Vatican on Friday released the closing message of the assembly. New York's Cardinal Edward Egan had drawn opening day applause for his ministering to the dying in the World Trade Centre, and many of the bishops abandoned texts prepared long in advance to condemn terrorism or to draw attention to injustices which some of the bishops saw as fueling hatred by the marginalised toward the affluent.

Terrorism topped the list of concerns in the bishops' closing message.

"Our assembly, together with the Holy Father, has expressed its deepest sympathy for the victims of the outrages of 11 September and for their families. We are praying for them and all the other victims of terrorism in the world," the message said. "We absolutely condemn terrorism, which nothing can justify."

On the question of social inequalities, the bishops said: "The persistence of gross inequalities between nations is a threat to peace. ... A drastic moral change is required."

Pope John Paul II concluded the Synod in a ceremony on Saturday morning.

Final message of Synod of Bishops