Sergei Gavrilov: ”Russia will share the experience of solving religious problems with Iran“

The Chairman of the Committee on Issues of Public Associations and Religious Organizations, President of the Interparliamentary Assembly on Orthodoxy discussed the features and prospects for the development of interfaith and interethnic relations with a number of religious figures in Tehran
Chairman of the Committee on Issues of Public Associations and Religious Organizations Sergei Gavrilov
Chairman of the Committee on Issues of Public Associations and Religious Organizations Sergei Gavrilov

Sergei Gavrilov Gavrilov Sergey Anatolievich Gavrilov
Sergey Anatolievich
participated in meetings with bishop of the Armenian Apostolic Church of Iran Sepouh Sarkisian, Christian members of the Parliament of the Islamic Republic of Iran and head of the International Center for Interfaith Dialogue Mohammad Mahdi Tashiri.

”In Iran, traditional religions are equal, there are always places for representatives of Christianity in the parliament, a special ‘reserve’. Nevertheless, Christians are concerned about a lot of issues: the strength of interfaith dialogue, the inviolability of Christian shrines and the protection of the rights of believers, strengthening the foundations of faith for achieving a lasting peace,“ the parliamentarian explained.

Sergei Gavrilov expressed his readiness to share Russian experience in solving problems in these areas, as ”Russia is the flagship in the sphere of protecting the believers’ rights, preserving the traditional values of Islam and Orthodoxy“.

Following the meeting with the head of the International Center for Interfaith Dialogue, Mohammad Mahdi Tashiri, Sergei Gavrilov stressed that ”it was Mohammad Tashiri who was one of the founders of the Russian-Iranian Joint Commission for ‘Orthodoxy-Islam’ Dialogue, which serves as a ‘bridge’ between different religious believers“.

”The eleventh meeting of the Commission, held in the capital of Iran in May 2018, was expectedly topical and was devoted to the subject ‘Religions and the environment’.

The Orthodox delegation led by the Metropolitan of Kazan and Tatarstan Feofan took part in the discussion of the Orthodox understanding of the ecological problems. During its existence, the Commission has successfully implemented the tasks of strengthening the dialogue between the Russian Orthodox Church and the Muslim community of the Islamic Republic of Iran,“ said Sergei Gavrilov.

The parliamentarian also discussed the problems of extremism and terrorism that ”use religious slogans as a justification for their actions to destroy the centuries-old relations between Christians and Muslims, a justification of the genocide of Christians in the Middle East, the intensification of Islamophobia in the Western world“ with head of the International Center for Interfaith Dialogue Mohammad Mahdi Tashiri.