The Vatican confirms: the document published yesterday by Il Fatto Quotidiano is authentic. Those two pages in German, added to two pages attached, do really exist and they have been officially delivered inside the Vatican rooms. Yet again, cardinal Paolo Romeo admitted yesterday he was on a secret trip to China. While there, he would have made strong statements on Pope’s death, picturing a plot to kill the Holy Father and reported yesterday by Il Fatto.

The object line of the document reports: “During his hearings in China, cardinal Romeo foreshadows the death of  Pope Benedict XVI within 12 months. Cardinal Romeo was told of a serious plot of death by a well informed source. Cardinal Romeo announced the Holy Father had only 12 months ahead to live. And he was so sure about himself, as he knew it with precision, that he predicted Pope Benedict’s death within 12 months. Cardinal Romeo’s allegations were based on a well informed source. His statement of a death plot against the Pope made his Chinese interlocutors think the Holy Father was about to be the victim of an attack. The document is written in a fluent German by anonymous, and rumors are circulating that cardinal Dario Castrillón Hoyos had been helped by a German friend in writing the document. Castrillón would only have authored a note attached to the document. The Castrillón’s note, written in a weak Italian, is fulfilled WITH investigating remarks: “They recommend to ask those questions (to Romeo)”.

Whom did he talk to? What did he get? What did he say about the Vatican or the Chinese government? What kind of interest do Chinese have in Sicily? Where did he stay while in China? Nobody knows who “they” are nor if those questions were answered. Castrillón could be the writer of that note as he was complaining about Romeo’s trip to China.

Indeed Castrillón considered himself as the favored Vatican diplomat in the Pope’s strategy towards China. Besides the two pages in German and the page containing the questions, there is a fourth page. Just a few sentences about China’s succession plan, with president Hu Jintao passing the baton to his successor Xi Jinping, China’s former vicepresident.

However, yesterday night, Vatican spokesman father Federico Lombardi tried to play down the content of the document: “It’s a nonsense”. When Sky Tg24 interviewed him, father Lombardi clarified: “I didn’t deny the existence of the document” he stated “but the content is a nonsense. Nobody ever took it seriously and nobody has to take it seriously”. Romeo had to admit the existence of the document too. “Last November cardinal Paolo Romeo had a 5 day private trip in People’s Republic of China” a note from the archdiocese recalls. According to the note, we now have a second uncommon event: a trip nobody was aware of. Not even his closest partners. “The assertions alleged are unreasonable and out of reality. We will not take them in consideration”.

Out of reality? Nonsense? Il Fatto has another story. The document was the main topic in one of the Pope’s private hearing with cardinal Dario Castrillón Hoyos. “I won’t talk” Castrillón pointed out yesterday “Ask those question to whom have delivered the document” and he probably meant “Ask those questions to whom have written the document and have it delivered to me”. Because Il Fatto has reliable elements to think that Castrillón delivered and discussed the document with the Pope himself.

(traduzione di Massimo Paradiso)