Moscow, May 23, Interfax - Russian Deputy Foreign Minister and Special Presidential Representative for the Middle East and Africa Mikhail Bogdanov at a meeting with the delegation of the Antiochian Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of North America has called for preserving Christian communities' significant role in the Middle East countries.
Bogdanov received the delegation led by Archbishop of New York and Metropolitan of All North America Joseph on Wednesday, the Russian Foreign Ministry said.
"The Russian side reaffirmed its unwavering support to preserving Christian communities' tangible historical role in Middle Eastern societies based on the peaceful coexistence and fruitful cooperation with members of other religious groups," the statement said.
The interlocutors discussed the situation in Syria, Lebanon and in the Middle East as a whole, specifically "in the context of Russia's efforts to facilitate the Syrian settlement and stabilization of the general regional situation." "In this context, the parties discussed challenges faced by Middle Eastern Christians amid a surge of terrorism activity and extremist sentiments, external provoking of interreligious disagreements and the attempts to politicize them," the Russian Foreign Ministry said.