While "Civil" Religions are Meeting

Phanariot Orthodox Patriarch Bartholomeos I carries historic significance. This conversation should be taken note of immediately.

First of all, it's necessary to thank the Honorable Patriarch for relying on his common sense and making an offer to meet, and the Esteemed Hodjaefendi for showing the wisdom to accept this offer.

Such a theme gains a special significance, especially now when fundamentalism in every religion ignores the above message, and intolerance is displayed among religions. It stands up for God's word.

However, there is a "national" dimension in this theme. First of all, the coming together (outside of protocol) of a Muslim religious community leader with a member of the Christian clergy is a source of pride for our country, which rose on the rich heritage of a multi-religion empire.

A new historic step is made in the process of peace. Moreover, there is no reason why the Patriarchate, which functioned universally during the Ottoman period but later assumed a national identity, should not resume its universality.

Claims that the Patriarchate is politically controlled by Athens are not compatible with the truth. The Patriarchate represents the Greeks in the Ottoman State, not the Greeks in modern Greece.