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  • » 02/13/2012, 00.00

    RUSSIA

    Kirill and religious leaders "bless" Putin’s candidacy

    Nina Achmatova

    The Russian premier will take a day off to meet religious communities. For Patriarch Kirill he will be the president. Criticism in the media: religions must be independent from power.
    Moscow (AsiaNews) – He would not to meet Western observers, or participate in a live TV debate with his main challengers at the polls for the presidential elections of March 4. But in order to speak with leaders of religious communities in Russia, on 8 February, Prime Minister Vladimir Putin has taken a day off from "commitments of government," according to his spokesman. And religious leaders have formally endorsed the candidacy.

    Hosted by the Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill – who described the Putin era a "miracle" - the event has brought to the monastery of St. Daniel in Moscow, representatives of both the so-called 'traditional religions' (Orthodox, Buddhist, Muslim and Jews) and non (Catholics, Armenians and other Christian denominations). Kirill "blessed" the political ambitions of the Prime Minister, calling him the "candidate who certainly has the best chance to turn his candidacy into a real office."

    The patriarch, who supported the demands for change expressed by the protesters who took to the streets against electoral fraud in December, urging the authorities to listen to the people - then thanked Putin for the "crucial role" played in moving the country out of crisis of the 1990s. Kirill then defined the last 12 years a "miracle" for the Church in Russia. Vladimir Vladimirovich Putin was president from 2000 to 2008, when he was appointed prime minister by the current head of the Kremlin, Dmitri Medvedev.

    Even the rabbi of Russia, Berel Lazar, has effectively supported the third term of Putin, criticizing the large anti-government protests in the last two months. "The fact that the demonstrations were held on Saturday, suggests that this was not a Jewish event," he joked. Same support from the Muslims, with the President of the Council of Muftis, Ravil Gainutdin: "Muslims know him. We trust him. We wish him every success. "

    The meeting at the monastery of St. Daniel has raised some criticism on Russian media. The religious information webside Portalcredo.ru carries the headline "The ore-electoral mobilization of confessions", accusing Putin – who has dropped in consensus – of exploiting the religious sentiment. "The religions bless the third term of Putin," Interfax wrote. "In these 12 years – the Russian news agency points out in a long commentary - religious organizations have gained a freedom and an unexpected support. They know that this 'symphony' was largely made possible thanks to Putin". "The fate of Russia depends very much on the fact that religious leaders recognize the historicity of the moment and understand their mission in it - continues the commentary - the criticism of power are not a threat to its existence, but a way to help make a better life ".
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    See also

    03/03/2008 RUSSIA
    On stage, the script already written for Russia's presidential elections
    In was taken for granted that the voting would coronate the successor of Putin, Mevedev. Also predictable was the information on preferences and on voting turnout, the criticisms of the opposition, and the praise of the Orthodox Church for the new head of the Kremlin. Voters had their backs to the wall: there was no real alternative, and widespread pressure on many levels to go to the polls.

    22/12/2011 RUSSIA
    Patriarch Kirill on the anti-Putin protests: authorities must listen to criticism
    Nearly three weeks since the explosion of demonstrations against the alleged electoral fraud in favor of the ruling party, Kirill prays for social peace. In two days next great demonstration in Moscow.

    27/09/2011 RUSSIA
    Putin a candidate for the Kremlin; Moscow Patriarchate: an example of integrity
    The Orthodox Church supports the Prime Minister's choice to run again for president. Meanwhile, the exchange of roles within the tandem yields its first casualty: Finance Minister Kudrin ousted.

    12/12/2011 RUSSIA
    Russia against Putin, the Orthodox Church warns against "revolutions"
    The central government fears uprisings along the lines of Ukraine’s orange revolution, but people just want to see their right to transparent elections respected. Medvedev opens an investigation into possible election fraud. Anti-Putin groups plans another rally for December 24.

    01/10/2004 RUSSIA
    Metropolitan Kondrusiewicz calls for a more representative Inter-religious Council of Russia

    Putin and Aleksij II say country must unite against terrorism and bolster inter-ethnic accord.





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