Russian lawmakers politicize events affecting Russian Orthodoxy


RIA Novosti, 9 July 2019


The Federation Council's Commission for Protection of State Sovereignty intends to discuss at a session on 11 July possible threats to Russian sovereignty in connection with attempts to split Orthodoxy and to discredit the Russian Orthodox Church, the head of the commission, Andrei Klimov, reported.


"The provocation against Russian lawmakers in Georgia and the attack on Orthodoxy, all of this will be discussed at a session of the Federation Council's Commission for Protection of Russian State Sovereignty," Klimov told RIA Novosti.


He said, the Ukrainian topic is also very serious. "This includes the attacks on Orthodox ministers of the Russian Orthodox Church," the senator emphasized.


"As one of the threats to state sovereignty, we have noted the inflaming of inter-religious strife and the attack on Orthodoxy," the lawmaker said, noting that Orthodoxy is one of the system-forming factors of Russia.


Klimov suggests that these facts will be discussed in the context of the formation of the "black book of intervention" in state affairs.


Earlier, an incident with Sergei Gavrilov, the president of the Inter-Parliamentary Association of Orthodoxy and deputy of the Russian State Duma, led to massive protests and the increase of tension in Russia's relations with Georgia. The reason for the discontent of the Georgian opposition was that on 20 June, during a session of the Inter-Parliamentary Assembly of Orthodoxy (MAP) in Tbilisi, Gavrilov, by the rights of the president of this organization, occupied the chair of the head of the Georgian parliament.


After this, the opposition members left the hall, the session was interrupted, and then radicals seized the parliament. As Gavrilov told RIA Novosti, people who burst into the building doused him in water and tried to take away documents. Tbilisi was flooded with protest demonstrations, during which the demonstrators spoke out against the participation of Russian delegates in the MAP session. Special forces broke up the rally, but on the next day protests continued. Two hundred forty persons were injured and more than 300 were arrested.


Against the backdrop of these events, the Russian president signed an order prohibiting Russian airlines from transporting citizens from Russia to Georgia as of 8 July and recommending to tour operators and agents not to sell trips to this country. (tr. by PDS, posted 9 July 2019)

Background articles:
Churches involved in dispute between Georgia and Russia
June 22, 2019
Russia Religion News Current News Items

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