The Vatican, as well as Pope Francis, wishes to expand bilateral ties with Vietnam, visiting Vatican’s Under-Secretary for Relations with States Antoine Camilleri said in Hanoi Wednesday.
The Vatican official made the statement at a reception held yesterday for him by Vietnamese Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Pham Binh Minh, the Vietnam News Agency reported the same day.
At the meeting, Deputy PM Minh reiterated the Vietnamese Government’s consistent policy to respect and safeguard people’s rights to religion and religious freedom, as well as to support the operation of all religions, including Catholics, in Vietnam.
The Vietnamese official called on the Vatican to continue to encourage the Catholic community in Vietnam to follow the State’s policies and actively contribute to boosting the country’s development and consolidating the national defense.
In reply, Camilleri expressed his thanks to the Vietnamese authorities for their continuous support for the Vietnamese Catholic Church.
He also said he was impressed by the religious practices conducted at some Vietnamese localities he had visited.
Camilleri led a Vatican delegation to Hanoi on Wednesday to attend the two-day 5th meeting of the Vietnam-Vatican Joint Working Group.
The Vietnamese delegation at the meeting is led by Deputy Foreign Minister Bui Thanh Son.