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MP speaks against initiative to grant Orthodoxy special role in Constitution

December 09, 2013, 14:58 UTC+3 MOSCOW

Speaker of the State Duma, lower house of parliament, Sergei Naryshkin: the Russian state is multi-religious

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© ITAR-TASS/Stanislav Krasilnikov

MOSCOW, December 09. /ITAR-TASS/. Speaker of the State Duma, lower house of parliament, Sergei Naryshkin said he came against an initiative to give Orthodoxy’s special role in the Constitution.

“I’d not uphold such initiative,” Naryshkin told Rossiya 24 Channel on Monday.

“The Russian state is multi-confessional. This is the main reason,” the Duma speaker said.

On November 22, the lower religious of parliament put in its website an initiative from head of the Committee for the Women, Family and Children Affairs Yelena Mizulina (A Just Russia). “The faction’s lawmakers supported Yelena Mizulina’s initiative on writing an idea in the Constitution preamble that Orthodoxy is the basis of national and cultural identity of Russia,” the Duma website says.

Meanwhile, lawmakers said the A Just Russia faction had debated citizens’ address to record Orthodoxy’s special historical role in the Constitution.

Mizulina said, “Orthodoxy’s significance in the development of Russia and not ‘its state nature or determining role’ should be mentioned.”

“No proposals were put forth,” the committee’s press service said.

Later Mizulina said: “This is not my personal view. Over 300,000 signatures were collected. I fully back this initiative that is why I talked about citizens’ address at the inter-faction group for protecting Christian values.

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