Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks during his meeting with Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia, April 12, 2019
Thank you for the invitation. Our contacts have a special significance , especially at the present moment when Orthodox Christianity, not only the Russian Orthodox Church but global Orthodox Christianity is the subject of abuse and destructive acts. The gross interference of western nations and our Ukrainian neighbours in ecclesiastical affairs has become a serious threat to stability in various regions of the world. Our cooperation in promoting the ideals of goodness, justice and peace is of the utmost importance now.
We have always worked closely together. We have a joint working group that facilitates cooperation between the Foreign Ministry and the Russian Orthodox Church. The group has regular meetings to exchange views on various situations in many regions of the world inhabited by Orthodox Christians. The group discusses problems of Orthodox Christians in Ukraine, who belong to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate, as well as the problems of Christians, and not only Orthodox Christians, in the Middle East and in many other regions of the world.
Our cooperation is instrumental in meeting the legitimate interests and needs of a large number of our compatriots and people professing Orthodox Christian values.
I am very pleased to have this opportunity. Thank you again for your invitation.