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Vatican conference warns of dangers of resurgent nationalism

/ 07:56 PM May 01, 2019

VATICAN CITY – The Vatican is hosting a conference on the resurgence of nationalism around the world, warning of the dangers of economic protectionism, xenophobic anti-migrant rhetoric and weak international institutions to the democratic world order.

The conference, “Nation, State, Nation-State,” opened Wednesday at the Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences, a Vatican thinktank.

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German Cardinal Walter Kasper, an ally of Pope Francis, said in a keynote speech that 20th century nationalism produced two World Wars. He said that international institutions created in their aftermath to promote peace had distanced ordinary citizens from decision-making power.

He warned that the resulting insecurities and fears fueled populist and neo-nationalistic ideologies “closed inside walls of isolation.”

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Francis has denounced such isolationist trends, focusing in particular on the global responsibility for the environment and the plight of migrants. /gsg

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