The Vatican today released a statement in response to the decision by an Iraqi court to impose the death penalty on Tariq Aziz, a Chaldean Christian who was the international face and voice of the Saddam Hussein regime.
The following is an NCR translation of the statement from Jesuit Fr. Federico Lombardi, the Vatican spokesperson.
“The position of the Catholic church on the death penalty is well known. It’s hoped, therefore, that the sentence against Tariq Aziz will not be executed, precisely in order to favor reconciliation and the reconstruction of peace and justice in Iraq after the great sufferings it has experienced.”
“Regarding a possible humanitarian intervention, the Holy See is not accustomed to operate in a public fashion, but through the diplomatic means at its disposal.”