30 May 2018, 17:01
Russian Orthodox Church denies criticism of U.S. State Dept, says 'religious majority' needs protection
Moscow, May 30, Interfax - The Russian Orthodox Church has responded to the report of the U.S. Department of State in which the Russian authorities are accused of encroaching on the rights of religious minorities and privileging the Russian Orthodox Church.
"Observance of people's religious freedom and the quality of regulation of relations of religious communities with the state is not limited to the criterion of the situation of religious minorities. The religious majority deserves at least the same attention in terms of protection of religious freedoms as the religious minority," Vakhtang Kipshidze, deputy head of the synodal department on liaison between the church and society and the mass media, told Interfax-Religion on Tuesday.
The authors of the U.S. report continue looking at religious situations solely through the prism of rights and preferences provided to religious minorities, he said.
"We believe that the Department of State's report remains in the narrow framework of political dogmas, which are rapidly becoming obsolete in today's world," Kipshidze said.
He also said the report "sometimes gives the impression that the new U.S. presidential administration is closer to the need to protect the rights of the majority, including the religious one, than the authors of the Department of State report." Kipshidze believes this is illustrated by U.S. President Donald Trump's public support for public organizations that oppose abortion and thus express the opinion of the majority of the Christian and non-Christian population of the country.
On Tuesday, the U.S. Department of State released its annual report on religious freedoms around the world. Russia was again accused of detentions and fines against representatives of religious minorities suspected of extremism.
The report also said that Russia's Supreme Court had found the work of Jehovah's Witnesses to be illegal and classified the organization as extremist and that the Russian authorities had convicted and fined people for public speeches that the authorities said were insulting to believers.
It also said the Russian authorities had fined and deported foreigners engaged in religious activities, including a rabbi, four Korean Baptists, and a Pentecostal pastor from India.
Generally, according to the report, non-governmental organizations in Russia registered a reduction in the number of instances of violence associated with religious affiliation in 2017.
- Russian Orthodox Church dismisses rumors of Kiev Lavra of the Caves takeover by Orthodox Church of Ukraine 02 December 2022, 22:22
- Russian Orthodox Church slams Ukraine's plans to ban Ukrainian Orthodox Church 02 December 2022, 18:55
- Ukrainian Security Service officials arrive at Ukrainian Orthodox Church premises in 3 regions 02 December 2022, 16:40
- Security Service of Ukraine seizes pro-Russian books in Orthodox nunnery in Trans-Carpathian Region 01 December 2022, 15:02
- Russia's Federation Council endorses bills banning LGBT, pedophilia propaganda 30 November 2022, 14:02
- Cyril and Methodius Monastery of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church being searched 30 November 2022, 11:52
- Kadyrov and the head of Russian Buddhists criticizes the Pope's statements about the conflict in Ukraine 30 November 2022, 11:20
- Only constitutional amendment can provide basis for reinstating capital punishment in Russia - Constitutional Court chairman 29 November 2022, 15:20
- The Russian Church doubts the ability of Ukraine to be an independent country 28 November 2022, 11:33
- Russia's Duma to pass bill in Dec banning services of Russian surrogate mothers for foreigners 28 November 2022, 10:05
- Chernovtsy and Bukovina Diocese searched, high treason case opened – media 25 November 2022, 18:00
- Russia's State Duma adopts package of bills banning LGBT propaganda 24 November 2022, 15:58
- Marketplaces to be banned from selling goods with LGBT propaganda in Russia 23 November 2022, 16:53
- Ukrainian law enforcement officers find pro-Russian literature when searching Ukrainian Orthodox Church establishments - media 23 November 2022, 13:41
- Bill on banning Russian Orthodox Church in Ukraine registered in Verkhovnaya Rada 23 November 2022, 10:34
- Russian Orthodox Church says persecution of monks in Kiev Pechersk Laura Monastery must stop 22 November 2022, 14:21
- Searches at Kiev Lavra of the Caves are yet another link in 'chain of military actions' of Ukraine against Russian Orthodoxy – Peskov 22 November 2022, 13:53
- Ukrainian Security Service looking for saboteurs, weapons at Kiev Lavra of the Caves 22 November 2022, 12:42
- Patriarch Kirill says the fate of the world depends on the future of Russia 21 November 2022, 11:58
- Putin sends birthday greetings to Patriarch Kirill 21 November 2022, 11:54
- Sex change propaganda to be penalized by fine of 50,000 to 1 mln rubles in Russia under amendments approved by Duma committee 21 November 2022, 11:52
- Russian bailiffs forcibly collecting 6-mln-ruble fines from TikTok for LGBT propaganda 17 November 2022, 11:10
- Russia's Patriarch Kirill says ready to speak on western TV 16 November 2022, 18:41
- Putin calls high spiritual and moral guidelines the basis of Russia's identity 15 November 2022, 16:58
- Verkhovnaya Rada deputy initiates transfer of Kiev Lavra of the Caves to Orthodox church of Ukraine 15 November 2022, 16:25
- State Duma may pass bill banning LGBT propaganda next week 14 November 2022, 20:30
- Putin signs decree on foundations of state policy for consolidating traditional Russian values 09 November 2022, 18:46
- Archpriest Mikhail Vasilyev who died in Special Military Operation zone awarded Hero of Russia title 08 November 2022, 22:40
- Patriarch Kirill says the current challenges threaten the very existence of Russia 07 November 2022, 13:27
- FJCR president says no growth of anti-Semitism in Russia 03 November 2022, 15:52