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Vatican envoy boycotts Holocaust memorial

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The Vatican’s
ambassador to Israel
said he will boycott Holocaust remembrance ceremonies at Yad Vashem over its
depiction of Pope Pius XII. The Vatican is
pushing forward the canonization of the controversial wartime pope. A photo of
Pius in the Israeli Holocaust memorial since 2005 says: “Even when reports
about the murder of Jews reached the Vatican,
the pope did not protest.”

“I don’t intend to go to Yad Vashem if things remain
the way they do,” Monisgnor Antonio Franco, the Vatican envoy, said
Thursday.

Yad Vashem officials expressed “shock and
disappointment;” every embassy in Israel
traditionally sends envoys to the ceremony, taking place this year on Monday.

The caption to the photo notes two exceptions late in the
Holocaust, but the Vatican
has protested the caption since it was posted, saying it has evidence that Pius
quietly intervened on behalf of Jews.

Yad Vashem says it will reconsider only if the Vatican allows Yad Vashem researchers access to Vatican
archives, something the Vatican refuses to do.

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