|Vatican||POPE, ANNAN DISCUSS BALKAN PEACE PROSPECTS|
During a meeting with UN Secretary General Kofi Annan at the Vatican yesterday, Pope John Paul II said that the war in the Balkans should be ended, and an international peacekeeping force "acceptable to all concerned" should ensure the immediate return of all refugees to their homes in Kosovo.
Catholic World News reports that the Pope had requested the meeting with Annan, as part of the latest Vatican effort to end the Kosovo crisis. Annan was accompanied to the Vatican by UN undersecretary Kieran Prendergast. The Holy Father was accompanied by Cardinal Angelo Sodano, the Vatican Secretary of State, and Archbishop Jean-Louis Tauran, the Secretary for Relations with States.
In his remarks to the UN leader, the Pope emphasised the "humanitarian tragedy" of Kosovo, and reiterated his insistence that any solution must respect "history and rights." He also stressed that any peace agreement must provide for the peaceful return of the refugees.
Catholic World News 11:57am 4/5/99