WikiLeaks: Vatican Pulled Out of Holocaust Task Force

Group sought release of Pius XII records
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 22, 2010 4:58 AM CST
In this file photo dated Sept. 1945, Pope Pius XII, wearing the ring of St. Peter, raises his right hand in a papal blessing at the Vatican.    (AP Photo, File)
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(Newser) – The Vatican backtracked on an agreement to join an organization dedicated to remembering the Holocaust because of mounting controversy over the wartime role of Pope Pius XII according to diplomatic cables released by WikiLeaks. Plans for the Vatican to join the Task Force for International Cooperation on Holocaust Education, Remembrance, and Research "had fallen apart completely … due to Vatican back-pedaling," an American diplomat wrote last year. he Guardian reports.

Pope Pius XII's failure to publicly denounce the Holocaust has long been controversial, and the Vatican's move came amid a dispute that could have been solved by Julian Assange. Some 16 million documents from Pius XII's papacy are stored at the Vatican, and the diplomatic cables say that the Holocaust memorial task force had been pressuring the Vatican to declassify them.

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