R.P.Ts. BELIEVES THAT JEHOVISTS ARE PROSECUTED IN RUSSIA NOT FOR FAITH BUT FOR EXTREMISM
Interfax-Religiia, 28 September 2019
The Russian Orthodox Church (RPTs) declared that Jehovah's Witnesses, whose organization is forbidden in the RF, find themselves in prison not for their religious views but because of extremist actions.
"So far as I know, those Jehovah's Witnesses who are subjected to imprisonment are subjected to it not for their convictions, not for their religious teaching. Nobody will put a person in prison on the basis of doctrinal propositions. The issue always is about extremism," said the head of the synodal Department of External Church Relations, Metropolitan Ilarion, on a broadcast of the program "Church and World" on the Rossiia-24 television channel.
Speaking about the detention of Jehovists in Surgut, where there appeared reports about the use of torture on members of the organization, the metropolitan noted that "in all concrete cases it is necessary to investigate concretely." "If we are talking about torture, if it is a proven fact, then there cannot be any justification for this fact, regardless of who was subjected to torture—Orthodox, Muslim, Jew, Baptist, or representative of any sect," the metropolitan said.
He expressed disagreement with the approach of the United States to questions of religious freedom, speaking of protests by the State Department against the prosecution of Jehovah's Witnesses in Russia.
"Americans have their own
to religious topics: they believe that there should not be
confessions in one country or another, that all religious
different kinds of sects, should enjoy identical benefits. We
criteria and different approaches, and on a number of criteria
we do not comply
with the American approaches," the metropolitan noted. (tr. by
30 September 2019)
American government speaks out for Russian Jehovah's Witnesses
September 23, 2019
Russia to retaliate against U.S. defense of Jehovah's Witnesses
September 11, 2019
State Department supports Jehovah's Witnesses in torture claim
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