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Syria: "We appreciate Russia's sacrifices for our country" - Syriac Orthodox Patriarch *EXCLUSIVE* *PARTNER CONTENT*01:56

Syria: "We appreciate Russia's sacrifices for our country" - Syriac Orthodox Patriarch *EXCLUSIVE* *PARTNER CONTENT*

Syrian Arab Republic, Damascus
February 10, 2016 at 22:26 GMT +00:00 · Published

The position of the Vatican is also known and is to support [Syria]. Thus, these two positions were very similar and we hope that the meeting will be an occasion for an in-depth study of the survival of Christianity and for finding ways to institutionalise its presence in the region. The scheduled meeting of the leaders of two of the world's largest Christian churches - Catholic and Russian Orthodox - is very important for Christians in the Middle East. We certainly pray that a good outcome will be achieved at this meeting, and hope for practical steps from their Holiness to consolidate the presence of Christians in the region."

Syriac Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch and All the East Ignatius Aphrem II hoped that the meeting between Pope Francis of the Vatican and Patriarch Kirill of the Russian Orthodox Church will be beneficial to the "Christian faith in the Middle East," during an exclusive interview with RT in Damascus, Wednesday.

Aphrem II took the opportunity to praise Russia's military actions in Syria saying "we appreciate Russia's sacrifices for our country in the fight against terrorism," adding "I am sure that the Russian Orthodox Church contributes to the adoption of such positions by the Russian government to protect all Syrians."

The meeting between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill is expected to take place in Havana, Cuba on Thursday. It will be the first time since the Great Schism of 1054 that the heads of the two major Christian churches will meet.

Syria: "We appreciate Russia's sacrifices for our country" - Syriac Orthodox Patriarch *EXCLUSIVE* *PARTNER CONTENT*01:56
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The position of the Vatican is also known and is to support [Syria]. Thus, these two positions were very similar and we hope that the meeting will be an occasion for an in-depth study of the survival of Christianity and for finding ways to institutionalise its presence in the region. The scheduled meeting of the leaders of two of the world's largest Christian churches - Catholic and Russian Orthodox - is very important for Christians in the Middle East. We certainly pray that a good outcome will be achieved at this meeting, and hope for practical steps from their Holiness to consolidate the presence of Christians in the region."

Syriac Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch and All the East Ignatius Aphrem II hoped that the meeting between Pope Francis of the Vatican and Patriarch Kirill of the Russian Orthodox Church will be beneficial to the "Christian faith in the Middle East," during an exclusive interview with RT in Damascus, Wednesday.

Aphrem II took the opportunity to praise Russia's military actions in Syria saying "we appreciate Russia's sacrifices for our country in the fight against terrorism," adding "I am sure that the Russian Orthodox Church contributes to the adoption of such positions by the Russian government to protect all Syrians."

The meeting between Pope Francis and Patriarch Kirill is expected to take place in Havana, Cuba on Thursday. It will be the first time since the Great Schism of 1054 that the heads of the two major Christian churches will meet.