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Croatia: Albright Praises Zagreb Archbishop

Washington, 24 October 1997 (RFE/RL) - U.S. Secretary of State Madeleine Albright has praised the Archbishop of Zagreb in Croatia for preaching understanding and religious tolerance.

Albright said yesterday she welcomes statements earlier this month by newly appointed Archbishop Josip Bozanovic, expressing warmth towards leaders of other faiths and calling for an easing of tensions in public life.

Albright said community and religious leaders play a vital role in Bosnia and throughout the Balkans. She said the ethnic hatred that has split the region was taught and preached over and over again, causing deep wounds that must now be healed with time and effort.

Albright made the comment in prepared remarks on religious freedom delivered at Catholic University in Washington.

She said the promotion of religious freedom and reconciliation among religious groups is a U.S. foreign policy priority that will be reflected in next week's U.S-China summit meeting in Washington.

Albright said the U.S. will stress to Chinese president Jiang Zemin the importance of respecting the religious heritage of the people of Tibet.