2020-12-23 10:04:00

Head of Belarusian Catholics can return to country

Minsk, December 23, Interfax - The Embassy of Vatican has been informed that its Archbishop Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz of Minsk and Mogilev can freely return to Belarus.

"The Apostolic Nunciature to Belarus hereby notified that on December 22, 2020, competent state authorities informed that Archbishop Tadeusz Kondrusiewicz does not have obstacles to returning to the Republic of Belarus," a statement on the website of the Roman Catholic Church said.

The embassy "expresses its gratitude to Belarusian authorities for the positive response to the request by Pope Francis about the Archbishop's possible return to perform the festive Christmas prayer service for his flock."

In September Belarus denied entry to Kondrusiewicz on the way from Poland and gave no explanation. The metropolitan is a Belarusian citizen. Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko said at the time that the archbishop "travelled to Poland and received advice on how to destroy the country." The Roman Catholic Church in Belarus Church on its website extracts from Kondrusiewicz' interview to the Polish Catholic TV Trwam channel, in which he claimed that the August 9 presidential election in Belarus was "not fair."

Earlier, Belarusian Foreign Minister Vladimir Makei said that Lukashenko had instructed him to resolve the situation involving the archbishop.