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January 24, 2010

"Attempts to Separate Orthodox Nations Futile"

Moscow, January 22, Interfax - Any attempts to set the nations united by Orthodox religious and cultural values at loggerheads are doomed to failure, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said at an awards ceremony at Moscow's Christ the Savior Cathedral on Thursday.

"Any attempts to cause the Orthodox nations to quarrel have ultimately proved to be futile," Medvedev said in his acceptance speech after being honored for his role in strengthening Orthodox unity and promoting Christian values.

"It is common spiritual and cultural values that are capable of bringing both states and peoples together," he said.

Medvedev mentioned "the Russian Orthodox Church's great contribution to an inter-church dialogue."

"By restoring its canonical unity, it showed an unprecedented example of overcoming mistrust and dissociation, displayed a true spirit of conciliarism, and showed a powerful consolidating principle," he said.

This was "a most important signal not only to people practicing Orthodoxy but also to the entire world, and it shows that there can be no insurmountable obstacles when a church, a state or several states, and society have a common goal, that is, desire for unity," Medvedev said.