In the ROC and the Kremlin has responded to the request of the famous TV presenter Vladimir Pozner to clarify the situation that occurred in the country after the adoption of the law on insulting the feelings of believers in connection with the verdict of the blogger Ruslan Sokolovsky. Posner feared that he, too, can draw for atheism.

The Russian Orthodox Church (ROC) does not consider atheism as a reason for the prosecution, said Deputy Chairman of the Synodal Department of the Moscow Patriarchate on relations with the media Vakhtang Kipshidze.

“We believe that atheistic beliefs, as well as any other extremist or hateful, associated with the dignity of the person”, – quotes the radio station “Moscow speaking”.

According to Kipshidze, the people who hold atheistic beliefs are also worthy of respect. “Declaration that the person is an atheist, is an occasion for dialogue and discussion, but not for criminal prosecution,” he said.

At the same time the representative of the Russian Orthodox Church said that the sentence Sokolovsky was not connected with the fact that he is an atheist, and that his remarks violated the dignity of people, including Christians, Muslims and other “obidensky groups.”

“Many media wrongly spread information about what the blogger Sokolovsky was punished because he was catching pokémon, and for the fact that he is an atheist. I am convinced that it is not. And the reason for guilty verdict – an attack on human dignity. I urge that the verdict against blogger was seen as the intention of the Russian law enforcement system to protect people from infringements on their dignity,” said Kipshidze.

“We believe that if a person adheres to the atheistic belief, it does not offend anyone’s feelings. We have always advocated open and honest dialogue including atheists. Dialogue with them is built on respect for dignity as believers and unbelievers. Believers and non-believers have dignity as people created in the image and likeness of God,” said the Kipshidze. He stressed that the Church has never questioned the principle of secularism that exists in Russian society, reports RIA “Novosti”.

Posner’s question was addressed to the President of Russia Vladimir Putin and Patriarch Kirill. However, the Kremlin has stated that they will not to answer it. “No, there is no reaction”, – said the press Secretary of the President Dmitry Peskov. He added that “this is a rhetorical question, and the question of responsibility is not within the prerogative of the Kremlin.” “This is a question that comes to our judicial system,” – quoted Peskov TASS.

We will remind, the sentence to blogger Ruslan Sokolovsky was made last week, may 11. In the text of the sentence imposed by the court, said that the blogger had insulted the feelings of believers “through the denial of the existence of God, denial of existence of the founder of Christianity and Islam, Jesus Christ and Muhammad” (quoted by Posner).

Commenting on the verdict at the end of his transmission on the First channel on Monday, may 15, Posner noted that he too is an atheist and suggested that they might charge him for it to court.

ROC said Posner, who fear prosecution for atheism, but the Kremlin considered the question of “rhetorical” 16.05.2017

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