London, October 18, Interfax - The war on terrorism is a sacred war, and must be a common cause of all countries, not just Russia, Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia told a press conference at London's Luton Airport after his visit to the United Kingdom.
"I regret that my words were misread. I never spoke about a sacred war in Syria, I spoke about a sacred war on terrorism. I think very many victims of terrorism in Europe could subscribe to these words. Suffice to recall all that happened comparatively recently in France, in Belgium," the patriarch said, responding to reporters' questions about the military operation in Syria.
By protecting our loved ones, relatives, our countries and people from terrorism, we are protecting the sacred gift of life that terrorists are encroaching upon, the patriarch said.
"My words should not be perceived in political sense. But I am deeply convinced that participation by peoples and states in certain military operations can be so called," the Russian Church leader said.
The fight against Nazism, in particular, is also called the sacred war, he said.
"Even in our songs we used these words to extol the heroism of our soldiers of the Great Patriotic War, the Second World War. We have a wonderful song, 'The national war is going, the sacred war'," Patriarch Kirill said.
The war on Nazism was sacred was because in it people fought for their life, independence, their way of life and future as a whole, he said.
"In this sense, today's war on terrorism - and it must be our common, not just Russia's cause, this is the cause for all countries, we must unite to defeat this evil - and it is this war that I call sacred," Patriarch Kirill said.