12 October 2011, 10:41
Patriarch Kirill against introducing death penalty in modern Russia
Chisinau, October 12, Interfax - Death penalty is acceptable in special cases, but existing judicial system cannot provide its justified use, Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia believes.
"I'm against death penalty in today's Russia. Today to get rid of a competitor, they order a killer. Considering current state of our courts, if there's a death penalty, people will be "removed" legally. And it's a great danger," the Patriarch said in his interview with Moldavian, Romanian TV channels and Rossiya-24 TV.
According to him, there have already been several cases "when suddenly, in the last moment, it was cleared out that the person wasn't guilty."
"Thus if we speak about bringing back death penalty in some concrete cases, when we refer to maniacs, mass murders, terrorists, but we should have absolutely strong evidence that the person committed it and he wasn't forced to take this guilt, such things can take place in future," Patriarch Kirill believes.
The Primate reminded that the church tradition does not condemn or refuse death penalty, Christ Himself "was crucified, He went through death penalty, but He has never said that criminals shouldn't be executed and holy fathers don't say it either."
"Rejection of death penalty is not the result of Christian tradition, but the result of a new liberal philosophic idea that appeared in West European space," he said.
The Patriarch noted that though the Church had never spoke against death penalty, it spoke against applying it and there were only seven or eight cases of death penalty in the Russian Empire for more than hundred years.