ROME — Pope Francis has cautioned against “unfair” solutions aimed at ending the conflict between Israelis and Palestinians.
In a speech today during a visit to the Italian southern port city of Bari to reflect on peace in countries bordering the Mediterranean Sea, Francis laments the many areas of war and conflict, including in the Middle East and Northern Africa.
Francis speaks of “the still unresolved conflict between Israelis and Palestinians, with the danger of not fair solutions, and, thus, presaging new crises.”
The pope doesn’t cite any specific proposals.
A new US peace plan would let Israel annex all of its settlements along with the strategic Jordan Valley. It would give the Palestinians limited autonomy in several chunks of territory with a capital on the outskirts of Jerusalem, but only if they meet stringent conditions.
In the same speech, Francis takes a swipe at populist politics. “It scares me when I hear some speeches by some leaders of the new forms of popularism,” he says. He also laments that waves of refugees fleeing conflicts, climate change consequences and other adversity are “depicted as an invasion.”
Among the prelates gathered for his speech in Bari’s Pontifical Basilica of St. Nicholas are churchmen from the Balkans, Jerusalem and Algeria.