Pope Benedict XVI Address Diplomatic Corps (07/01/2013)
On Monday morning 7 January 2013, Pope Benedict XVI gave his yearly address to all members of the Holy See's diplomatic corps. Speaking to representatives of the 179 States that currently have full diplomatic relations with the Vatican, as well as members of numerous international organizations, Pope Benedict XVI emphasized that world leaders have a grave responsibility to work for peace. The European Union was represented by H.E. Ambassador Laurence Argimon-Pistre.
During his speech Benedict XVI went on to list urgent areas of concern starting with Syria which he described as being "torn apart by endless slaughter and the scene of dreadful suffering among its civilian population". The Pope also addressed the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestine, attacks against Christians in Nigeria, as well as his apostolic trips to Mexico, Cuba and Lebanon. On a global scale, the Pope also addressed social issues like religious freedom, education and the defence of life.