Meeting with representatives of US Embassy at the Department for External Church Relations

On 30 January 2012, Hegumen Philaret, vice-chairman of the Moscow Patriarchate’s Department for External Church Relations (DECR), met with Howard Solomon, deputy minister counsellor for political affairs of the US Embassy in Russia.

Attending the meeting were archpriest Sergiy Zvonarev, DECR secretary for far abroad countries, and Vakhtang Kipshidze and Yegor Murog, DECR. Accompanying Mr. Solomon were Kevin Covert and Jeremy Richart, political officers of the Embassy.

Those present discussed problems of freedom of conscience regularly presented in the annual reports of the US State Department on religious freedom in the world.

Hegumen Philaret gave particular attention to the cases of discrimination and persecution against Christians in the world which have provoked the concern of the Russian Orthodox Church authorities.

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