Vatican makes France wait over openly gay ambassador
Three months after appointing an openly gay diplomat as France's ambassador to the Vatican, Paris is still waiting for the green light from Rome.
Such a delay is unusual. Normally, the Vatican takes less than a month and a half before deciding whether to accept an ambassador.
But if the Holy See refuses, it does not make this public.
Laurent Stefanini "is one of our best diplomats. That's why we appointed him. We are waiting for a reply to our request," said the foreign ministry in Paris.
Sources close to President Francois Hollande said his appointment was "the wish of the president" and the cabinet of ministers.
The French cabinet approved Stefanini's appointment on January 5 but has not received a reply.
"A delay of three months like this is not normal," a well-informed source in Rome told AFP.
"The reply normally doesn't take more than a month, a month and a half," this source added.
If there is a refusal, "the Vatican doesn't reply, doesn't offer an explanation and it's up to the country concerned to interpret this lack of a reply."
In 2007, France proposed an openly gay diplomat to be its ambassador at the Vatican.
Paris never received a reply.
© 2015 AFP