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Pope John Paul II and Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomaios…

Pope John Paul II and Ecumenical Patriarch Vartholomaios greet each other during an extraordinary assembly of religious leaders who met in the Italian town of Assisi yesterday to pray for peace following the September 11 attacks. About 200 religious leaders accepted the pope’s invitation to the daylong retreat and agreed on a joint, 10-point pledge that proclaims that religion must never be used to justify violence. It was one of the largest gatherings ever of Christian groups, who joined representatives of 11 other religions: Judaism, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Shintoism, Jianism, Confucianism, Sikhism, Zoroastrianism, and followers of Tenrikyo and African tribal religions. Asked whether the British authorities had presented the Greeks with a list of suspects, Chrysochoidis said: «The talk about a list is an insult to Greece. We are a serious and strong country. We do not accept such procedures.» He stressed that there was close and good cooperation between the Greek and British police authorities. The latter have been assisting the Greeks since the murder in June 2000 of the British defense attache in Athens, Brig. Stephen Saunders, by the November 17 terrorist group.