Moscow (Agenzia Fides) – On Sunday, January 26th Patriarch of Moscow, Kirill and the Greek Orthodox Patriarch of Antioch, Yohanna X Yazigi made a joint appeal to the "Geneva II" international Conference on the Syrian conflict, which is currently underway in Switzerland, in order to invite all participants at the summit to "reject extremist demonstrations" and to put an end to "intolerance and political ultimatums". Only free and fraternal dialogue within the Syrian community - say the two Patriarchs in the letter - can pave the way to a peaceful solution of the crisis.
At the heart of the message of the two Orthodox Primates there is also the fate of Christians abducted during the conflict, from the two Metropolitan Bishops of Aleppo, the Greek Orthodox Boulos Yazigi (Patriarch Yohanna’s brother), the Syrian Orthodox Mar Gregorios Yohanna Ibrahim – kidnapped last April –to the nuns kidnapped at the beginning of last December from the convent of St. Tekla in Maalula. "We" write Kirill and Yohanna "call on all parties to show humanity and mercy as a sign of their desire to restore peace in Syria". The message of the two Patriarchs also contains an appeal to "stop the destruction of the priceless cultural and religious heritage" that enriches Syria, and whose destruction is "a crime against future generations". (GV) (Agenzia Fides 27/01/2014)