03 September 2018, 19:46
Constantinople hierarch denies reports on attempt to poison Patriarch Bartholomew during meeting with Patriarch Kirill
Moscow, September 3, Interfax - Bishop Daniel (Zelinsky) of Pamphilon has dismissed reports circulated by some Ukrainian media outlets alleging that Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew escaped being poisoned while meeting with Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia in Istanbul on Friday.
"Not true," Bishop Daniel of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in the United States (Ecumenical Patriarchate) said on Facebook.
"A few days ago, social media and even TV and news channels reported that supposedly there was an attempt to present a glass of poisoned water to the Ecumenical Patriarch by the employee of the Ecumenical Patriarchate," he said.
"I got to know Alexander pretty well, and had a glass of water with him today in the presence of the Consul General of Ukraine Oleksandr Gaman and Consul Max Vdovychenko," he said.
"The water was great," Bishop Daniel said. He also posted his joint photo with the presumed poisoner in a grey suit on his Facebook account.
Last weekend, the Informational Resistance group coordinated by Ukrainian Verkhovnaya Rada deputy Dmytro Tymchuk published a story headlined 'Phanar Smelling of Novichok: Patriarch Bartholomew Ignored Suspicious 'Drink' from Russian Federal Guard Service'.
The story was circulated by a number of Ukrainian media outlets and social networks. It accused members of the Russian delegation at the meeting between Patriarch Bartholomew and Patriarch Kirill of an attempt to poison Patriarch Bartholomew and other high-ranking priests of the Constantinople Patriarchate.
The man whom the authors of the story identified as "the Russian poisoner" in fact turned out to be an employee of the Constantinople Patriarchate, whose duties include offering water to guests at all events held at the Patriarchate, following an old Greek tradition.
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