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Statement of the communication service of the Department for External Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate concerning Syria

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  • Bill Samsonoff
    http://www.pravoslavie.ru/english/61843.htm Statement of the communication service of the Department for External Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate
    Message 1 of 1 , May 29, 2013
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      http://www.pravoslavie.ru/english/61843.htm

      Statement of the communication service of the Department for External
      Relations of the Moscow Patriarchate concerning Syria
      Moscow, May 28, 2013

      For many decades Syria was distinguished by the atmosphere of interfaith
      peace and agreement. Various communities of Christians, Muslims and Jews
      lived in good neighborly relations and mutual understanding. With the
      outbreak of armed resistance in this country the situation of religious
      minorities has worsened greatly.

      It is known that many radical extremists from different countries are
      taking part in acts of terrorism in Syria and they set themselves the
      task of total cleansing of the Middle East region from non-Muslims. As a
      result Christians in Syria are faced with persecutions the scale of
      which is becoming more menacing. According to Metropolitan Isaac of
      Apamia (The Orthodox Church of Antioch), Syrian Christians see that
      "after the arrival of militants the unbelievable is happening": Churches
      are destroyed, clergymen are kidnapped, Christians are forcibly driven
      from their homes and killed.

      In April this year, another Hierarch of the Orthodox Church of Antioch,
      Bishop Luke of Seidnaya, told the media that 140,000 Christians had been
      banished from their homes and at the same time Christian churches were
      systematically destroyed. "They are killing people. A human life is of
      no value for them," noted the Hierarch.

      On April 22, 2013, militants of an extremist organization kidnapped
      Syrian Christian Hierarchs: Metropolitan Paul of Aleppo (the
      Patriarchate of Antioch) and Metropolitan Mar Gregory Johanna Ibrahim
      (the Syriac Church) and their driver, a deacon, was murdered. The
      Metropolitans are still in captivity.

      On May 11, 2013, it became known that militants had destroyed the
      ancient Orthodox Monastery of Holy Prophet Elias in vicinity of the town
      of Al-Qusayr: they plundered the monastery, took away the church
      vessels, blew up the bell-tower, and destroyed the chancel and the font.

      The Russian Orthodox Church definitely condemns any violation and
      attempts of provoking interfaith strife in Syria. The Patriarchate of
      Moscow expresses its solidarity with the suffering brothers and
      sisters—Syrian Christians—and expresses its hope that the international
      community will devote due attention to such outrageous events.
      Large-scale and glaring violations of human rights must not be concealed
      but must be actively resisted.

      29 / 05 / 2013
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