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Vatican cardinal, in Russia, meets with Orthodox, Muslim, civil leaders

November 29, 2021

Cardinal Miguel Ángel Ayuso Guixot, the president of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue began a six-day journey to Russia on November 23.

The prelate met with Metropolitan Hilarion, chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Department for External Church Relations, and discussed the persecution of Christians, dialogue with Judaism and Islam, and “problems on the international agenda,” according to the Moscow Patriarchate.

Cardinal Ayuso Guixot then met with Rawil Gaynetdin, the Grand Mufti of Russia since 1996, and Albir Krganov, the Mufti of the Spiritual Assembly of Muslims of Russia. The meeting, described by the Vatican newspaper as “very cordial,” focused on the Document on Human Fraternity, signed by Pope Francis and the Grand Imam of Al-Azhar in 2019, and Fratelli tutti, the Pope’s 2020 encyclical letter.

The Vatican newspaper reported that during a meeting with Russian government officials, including Mikhail Bogdanov (Russia’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs) and Konstantin Shuvalov (Russia’s special representative for cooperation with Islamic states), the parties discussed religious liberty and other human rights of minorities—presumably the rights of Christians in predominantly Muslim nations.


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