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MOSCOW, March 10 (Itar-Tass) – Clergymen will not be brought into teams of EMERCOM psychologists sent to the site of emergency situations, spokeswoman for the Russian Ministry for Emergency Situations Irina Rossius told Tass on Sunday commenting on information saying clergymen will be involved in operations to assist in major emergency situations.
Earlier, a report on the web site of the Russian Orthodox Church said “church rescuers will work in cooperation with forces of the Russian Ministry for Emergency Situations and teams of psychologists as well as will fly on EMERCOM aircraft to the calamity zone together with them”.
Rossius specified that churchmen will not be included into groups or rescuers or psychologists, and explained that “in major emergency situations the ministry will be informing the Church about them along with all agencies”.
She stressed that in major calamities people need not only help of professional rescuers and psychologists, but also spiritual support.
“Cooperation of the Russian Orthodox Church and EMERCOM has continued for years,” she noted. The spokeswoman said that in 2010 the Russian Orthodox Church and the ministry signed an agreement on cooperation, and that the emergencies ministry protects historical and architectural monuments, including major churches, such as the Cathedral of Christ the Savior and St. Basil’s Cathedral.