Moscow, October 30, Interfax - Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia is hoping that Russia's participation in the fight against terrorism in Syria will be successful.
"The Russian Federation is now actively involved in the fight against terrorism. We are really hoping that the situation can be improved, the political situation can be stabilized, and, most importantly, terrorism can be defeated and the bloodshed can be stopped through cooperation with many others who want true peace in the Middle East," the patriarch said during a meeting with Allahshukyur Pasha-zade, head of the Directorate of Caucasus Muslims, in Moscow on Friday.
He said that bilateral relations between Orthodox Christians and Muslims are very important in this regard.
"In the CIS, and I am thankful to God for that, model relations were built between Orthodox Christians and Muslims throughout decades. I would like to especially emphasize your role in this work. You take dialogue with Orthodox Christians close to heart and you actively participate in it," the patriarch said.
He reiterated that the Russian Church considers it its duty to do everything in cooperation with Muslims and people of other religions to maintain and strengthen peace and to prevent the tragedy in the Middle East from undermining the centuries-old tradition of good relations between Orthodox Christians and Muslims.
"We take the tragedy that is now occurring in Syria and Iraq very close to heart. We see how relentless representatives of terrorist organizations are to their prisoners," Patriarch Kirill said, adding that he had previously received many requests from Christians to help protect them in Syria and Iraq.