Thursday, May 23, 2024

    Interior Ministry appeals to ROC in country: churches’ doors will remain open but we need to protect ourselves from calls to terror

    The head of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of Estonia, Lauri Läenemets (Social Democratic Party), addressed the communities of the Estonian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate.

    He expressed his support for the principle of religious freedom and freedom of belief for all Orthodox believers in Estonia, regardless of their nationality and citizenship. The statement was published by

    “The Republic of Estonia strongly defends the principle of religious freedom of its citizens, therefore I, as a member of the Government of the Republic, would like all Orthodox believers of Maaryamaa to have the opportunity to exercise their judgments and freedom of belief in such a way that the words and teachings of the Patriarch of Moscow as a leader authority regarding the support of aggression did not cast a shadow on them,” said the head of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia.

    Laenemets also emphasized the importance of protecting the community from calls supporting terror and other hostile ideologies. He emphasized the need for joint discussions and finding solutions that comply with the laws of the Republic of Estonia and Orthodox canons. In the near future, the Vice-Chancellor of the Ministry of Internal Affairs plans to meet with community representatives to discuss the situation.

    “I wish that the Orthodox believers of Estonia, regardless of their nationality and citizenship, feel that they are free people of a free country and are protected from calls that support terror and other hostile ideologies, both in substance and in appearance.”

    The address of the head of the Ministry of Internal Affairs emphasizes the importance of the value of religious freedom, freedom of thought and freedom of conscience, as well as the need to ensure community peace of mind.

    “Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church Kirill repeatedly justified, approved or blessed the military aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine, which began on February 24, 2022. Subsequently, the messages and appeals became more and more aggressive,” said Mr. Lianemets.

    It should be recalled that the Government calls on the Orthodox parishes in Estonia to renounce their subordination to Moscow. Also, the Russian Orthodox Church expressed outrage over accusations of terrorism voiced by Estonia.