Msgr. Claudio Celli,
in Jerusalem on December 30, 1993.
Mindful of the singular character and universal significance of the Holy Land;
Aware of the unique nature of the relationship between the Catholic Church and the Jewish people, and of the historic process of reconciliation and growth in mutual understanding and friendship between Catholics and Jews;
Having decided on July 29, 1992, to establish a bilateral permanent working commission in order to study and define together issues of common interest, and in view of normalizing their relations;
Recognizing that the work of the aforementioned commission has produced sufficient material for a first and fundamental agreement;
Realizing that such agreement will provide a sound and lasting basis for the continued development of their present and future relations and for the furtherance of the commission's task,
Agree upon the following articles:
2. The Holy See, recalling the Declaration on Religious Freedom of the Second Vatican Council, "Dignitatis Humanae," affirms the Catholic Church's commitment to uphold the human right to freedom of religion and conscience, as set forth in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and in other international instruments to which it is a party. The Holy See wishes to affirm as well the Catholic Church's respect for other religions and their followers as solemnly stated by the Second Vatican Council in its Declaration on the Relation of the Church to Non-Christian Religions, "Nostra Aetate."
2. The Holy See takes this occasion to reiterate its condemnation of hatred, persecution and all other manifestations of anti- Semitism directed against the Jewish people and individual Jews anywhere, at any time and by anyone. In particular, the Holy See deplores attacks on Jews and desecration of Jewish synagogues and cemeteries, acts which offend the memory of the victims of the Holocaust, especially when they occur in the same places which witnessed it.
2. The state of Israel recognizes the right of the Catholic Church to carry out its religious, moral, educational and charitable functions, and to have its own institutions, and to train, appoint and deploy its own personnel in the said institutions or for the said functions to these ends. The church recognizes the right of the state to carry out its functions, such as promoting and protecting the welfare and the safety of the people. Both the state and the church recognize the need for dialogue and cooperation in such matters as by their nature call for it.
3. Concerning Catholic legal personality at canon law, the Holy See and the state of Israel will negotiate on giving it full effect in Israeli law, following a report from a joint subcommission of experts.
2. The above shall apply notwithstanding an interpretation to the contrary of any article in this fundamental agreement.
3. The state of Israel agrees with the Holy See on the obligation of continuing respect for and protection of the character proper to Catholic sacred places, such as churches, monasteries, convents, cemeteries and their like.
4. The state of Israel agrees with the Holy See on the continuing guarantee of the freedom of Catholic worship.
2. The state of Israel and the Holy See express the hope that such pilgrimages will provide an occasion for better understanding between the pilgrims and the people and religions of Israel.
2. Without prejudice to rights relied upon by the parties:
The parties intend to commence the aforementioned negotiations within three months of entry into force of the present agreement and aim to reach agreement within two years from the beginning of the negotiations.
During the period of these negotiations, actions incompatible with these commitments shall be avoided.
2. The Holy See, while maintaining in every case the right to exercise its moral and spiritual teaching office, deems it opportune to recall that, owing to its own character, it is solemnly committed to remaining a stranger to all merely temporal conflicts, which principle applies specifically to disputed territories and unsettled borders.
2. Notwithstanding the validity of this agreement as between the parties, and without detracting from the generality of any applicable rule of law with reference to treaties, the parties agree that this agreement does not prejudice rights and obligations arising from existing treaties between either party and a state or states, which are known and in fact available to both parties at the time of the signature of this agreement.
2. Following the entry into force and immediately upon the beginning of the implementation of the present fundamental agreement, the Holy See and the state of Israel will establish full diplomatic relations at the level of apostolic nunciature on the part of the Holy See, and embassy on the part of the state of Israel.
This agreement shall enter into force on the date of the latter notification of ratification by a party.
Done in two original copies in the English and Hebrew languages, both texts being equally authentic. In case of divergency, the English text shall prevail.
Signed in Jerusalem, this 30th day of the month of December, in the year 1993, which corresponds to the 16th day of the month of Tevet, in the year 5754.