ASIA/IRAN - President Rohani: Iran and the Holy See together in the fight against extremism

Tehran - Iranian President Hassan Rohani relaunches dialogue between the Islamic and the Christian world, and hopes for an alliance between Iran and the Holy See regarding the major issues that shake humanity such as the fight against radicalism, injustice and poverty. As Fides learns, Rohani’s appeal was launched on the occasion of his meeting with His Exc. Mgr. Leo Boccardi, new Apostolic Nuncio in Iran. Rohani published a photo of the meeting on his social network account "Twitter", writing that "Islam and Christianity need to dialogue more than ever today, as the basis of conflicts between religions is mainly ignorance and the lack of mutual understanding". Rohani remarked that, according to the doctrine of their respective faiths, the Vatican and Iran have "common enemies" such as terrorism and extremism, and "similar goals", how to defeat injustice and poverty in the world. The Iranian President thanked Pope Francis for the good wishes sent to the Iranian people, hoping that "the two countries can work together to stop violence and radicalism in the world".
The new Apostolic Nuncio in Iran, Archbishop Leo Boccardi, called for "closer bilateral relations between the Holy See and the Islamic Republic", expressing the wish that the two countries can work together to resolve regional crises in the Middle East, particularly the current one in Syria. The Iranian foreign minister, Mohammad Javad Zarif, said that, given the strong presence of extremist groups, "the condition of religious minorities in Syria, such as Christians, are a cause of concern for us".