Syrian religious communities thanked the Russians for humanitarian aid

© Sputnik / Valery Melnikovskoye Church in Syria. Archival photoSyrian religious communities thanked the Russians for humanitarian aid© Sputnik / Valery Melnikov

The religious community of Syria will coordinate the humanitarian activities of the representatives of religions of Russia, as the Syrian believers are grateful to the Russians for the party of humanitarian aid, told RIA Novosti Secretary for inter-Christian relations of the Department for external Church relations of the Moscow Patriarchate hieromonk Stefan (Igumnov).

In April of 2017 by the Council on interaction with religious associations under the President of the Russian Federation was formed the interreligious working group on humanitarian assistance to the population of Syria. It included representatives of both Christian confessions and Muslim communities of Russia.

«In Beirut, was held a round table which was attended by the members of the working group and representatives of the religious communities of Syria and Lebanon. It discussed issues of coordination of work on rendering assistance to the stricken population of Syria between the religious communities of this country and Russia», — said Igumnov.

The volume of cargo delivered June 22 at the base Hamim, is about 20 tons, it included food and medical Essentials. 23 and 24 June, food packages will be distributed by the Russian center for conciliation of the warring parties in Syria among the population of Lattakia and Aleppo, and medicines are delivered to hospitals in these cities. As noted by the representative of the Russian Orthodox Church, representatives of the religious communities of Syria and Lebanon recognized humanitarian action successful.

«Reached agreement in principle on coordinating the activities of the working group of religious communities of Syria. The religious leaders thanked the Russian co-religionists for the delivered help and the attention paid by religious communities of Russia to the plight of the Syrian people,» — said father Stephan.

The Syrian side, according to him, «noted the crucial role of Russia in improving the situation in Syria, including the humanitarian aspect.» The round table was attended by representatives of the Antiochian Orthodox, Maronite, Syriac Orthodox, Armenian and Eastern-Catholic churches and the Muslim community. In the Russian delegation in addition Igumnov was the head of the Russian United Union of Christians of Evangelical faith (Pentecostals) Bishop Sergey Ryakhovsky, the representative of the Spiritual Assembly of Russian Muslims Abbas Shlyapochnikov, the representative of the Russian and Novo-Nakhichevan diocese of the Armenian Apostolic Church, priest Gevorg Vardanyan, a member of the Presidium of the Central spiritual administration of Muslims of Russia Ildar Ziganshin and the representative of the Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia to the Patriarch of Antioch, Igumen Arseny (Sokolov). After the round table the Russian delegation flew to Moscow.

Each denomination, said father Stephan, raising funds for humanitarian aid alone. Then all the collected funds are accumulated in one place are transferred to a single account of the Synodal Department of the Moscow Patriarchate for Church charity and social service, who has extensive experience of similar work.