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Report: leading Russian Orthodox official backs military action in Ukraine

Catholic World News - March 04, 2014

A leading Russian Orthodox official has lent his support to Russian military action in Crimea, the Religious Information Service of Ukraine reported.

“The Russian peacemaking mission in Ukraine should guarantee its citizens the right to self-determination and close ties with other peoples of historical Rus,” said Archpriest Vsevolod Chaplin, chairman of the Synodal Department for the Cooperation of Church and Society of the Moscow Patriarchate, according to the report.

“Already in 1995 the World Russian National Council declared that the Russian people, a divided nation on its historical territory, have the right for to be unified in one state body, a right universally recognized as a norm of international politics,” the prelate added.

“At the same time we will hope that the mission of Russian soldiers to protect the freedom and self-determination of those people and their very life will not encounter fierce opposition that would lead to large-scale conflict,” the prelate continued. “Nobody wants bloodshed and the deepening of those divisions that already exist among Orthodox people on the territory of historical Rus.”

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  • Posted by: jeremiahjj - Mar. 04, 2014 5:42 PM ET USA

    So the Russian prelate supports Putin, what else is new? He was probably told to say something positive about the Army's incursion into the Crimean peninsula. This is also an indication the Russian Orthodox Church will never support Christian reunification. Moscow is too paranoid to permit its clergy to be intertwined with a "foreign" religion.

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