20 May 2013, 10:04
Georgian patriarch calls on supporters, opponents of gay movement to pray for each other
Tbilisi, May 20, Interfax - Georgian Patriarch Ilia II has issued a statement on the events that occurred in Tbilisi on Friday, when thousands of people came to the city's Prospekt Rustaveli to prevent representatives of the NGO Identity from holding a rally in support of the rights of sexual minorities.
A huge crowd of people broke police cordons and tried to attack the rally participants, but they were taken from the center of the city by buses. Some thirty people, including police officers and a journalist, were hurt in the clashes.
"I want to respond to today's events in Tbilisi. We don't accept violence, but it can't be promoted either. People can fall into sin. I can say it's a sin. No religion justified this sin. At the same time, we can express the pain of our heart without interfering in their private life. I hope everything will calm down and I am calling on both parties to leave the streets, go home and pray for each other," Ilia II said in his televised address.
Next day two groups of people - sexual minority activists and anti-homosexuals - continued their protests gathered in front of the government headquarters for demonstrations.
One of Saturday's two groups of demonstrators, mostly members of the Civil Front nongovernmental organization, was demanding a legal ban on sexual minority propaganda.
The other group was demanding punishment for perpetrators of violence against champions of sexual minority rights and for "those who encourage violence." The group was claiming that clerics were particularly active in encouraging Friday's anti-homosexual actions and demanding calling them to account for this.
Police formed a cordon between the two groups, which were shouting at each other.
- Founder of Jehovah's Witnesses cell in Krasnoyarsk jailed for 6 years 27 June 2022, 19:42
- Izyum Diocese in Ukraine's Kharkov Region refuses to be independent of Russian Orthodox Church 27 June 2022, 16:19
- Borrell regrets Patriarch Kirill left off EU list of sanctioned individuals 27 June 2022, 16:16
- Patriarch Kirill calls for dismissing doubt about rightness of Russian way 27 June 2022, 11:04
- Ukrainian govt refuses to cancel lease with Ukrainian Orthodox Church 24 June 2022, 19:51
- Patriarch Kirill visits Russian servicemen injured during special operation in Ukraine 21 June 2022, 21:24
- Russia to hold 'Candle of Memory' vigil on eve of war's anniversary 21 June 2022, 20:06
- Jerusalem Patriarchate condemns Western rhetoric against Patriarch Kirill 21 June 2022, 19:02
- The image of the Virgin appeared on the door of Russian military hospital 21 June 2022, 18:01
- Ukrainian Orthodox Church asks EU diplomats for protection 16 June 2022, 19:46
- Russian Orthodox Church describes sanctions against Patriarch Kirill as absurd, pointless 16 June 2022, 14:47
- UK imposes sanctions on Patriarch Kirill 16 June 2022, 13:54
- LGBT pride parade won't be allowed in Chisinau - city mayor 14 June 2022, 10:00
- All-Tatar Public Center designated as extremist organization, banned 10 June 2022, 14:19
- Russian Orthodox Church concerned about prospects of ban on marches near clinics, religious sites 10 June 2022, 14:17
- Rallies, demonstrations to be prohibited near religious buildings in Russia 09 June 2022, 16:39
- Over half of Russians favor restrictions on migrants' entry into country - senior Kremlin official 09 June 2022, 15:28
- Draft bill stipulating fines up to 10 mln rubles for propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations submitted to State Duma 07 June 2022, 21:10
- Russian court gives four Jehovah's Witnesses real jail time, suspended sentences in Trans-Baikal Territory 07 June 2022, 19:29
- Russian army averted damage to Sviatogorsk Lavra's historical and Orthodox monuments 07 June 2022, 15:28
- Metropolitan Hilarion relieved of duties as Moscow Patriarchate's external relations dept chairman 07 June 2022, 15:03
- Only Local Council can change status of Ukrainian Orthodox Church - Moscow Synod 07 June 2022, 15:01
- Crimean bishoprics directly subordinated to Patriarch Kirill 07 June 2022, 14:21
- Patriarch Kirill calls Belarus a truly sovereign state 06 June 2022, 12:52
- Process of transfer of Alexander Metochion in Jerusalem to Russia to be completed in foreseeable future - Russian FM 03 June 2022, 19:51
- Friendship of Slavic peoples to stand test of time - Patriarch Kirill 02 June 2022, 10:00
- Lavrov, OIC secretary general discuss causes of escalation in int'l relations 01 June 2022, 10:00
- Borrell's remarks on Russian patriarch give Kiev 'sanction' to persecute canonical Church – Moscow Patriarchate 31 May 2022, 18:21
- Another Donbass diocese disagrees with UOC decision to proclaim independence 31 May 2022, 17:50
- Chisinau mayor says won't allow LGBT pride parade to happen 31 May 2022, 17:22