Representatives of religious minority groups in Türkiye stress importance of nature at summit

Thu, 16 Mar 2023 7:49 GMT
Religious representatives address 26th Eurasian Economic Summit on its 2nd day in Istanbul.
Representatives of religious minority groups in Türkiye stress importance of nature at summit

Representatives of religious minority groups in Türkiye stressed the importance of nature and the ecological balance Wednesday at the 26th Eurasian Economic Summit in Istanbul

"Climate change and war inevitably affect the future of our planet. We are responsible for the damage we cause to our world, our environment, and human life. Political and religious leaders have a responsibility in this regard," said Fener Greek Patriarch Bartholomew, speaking on the second day of the summit.

When peace is damaged, people's rights are violated and innocent people are harmed, he said, adding the Russia-Ukraine war is an example of this.

He blamed Russia for carrying out a military occupation by ignoring human and ecological integrity and demands for independence.

"We have also often condemned the legitimation of this situation with religious arguments."

He stressed that religious leaders should uncompromisingly advocate peace and life in harmony with nature, saying "we must support peace and stand against conflict."

Syriac Orthodox Metropolitan Yusuf Cetin said for a healthy and peaceful society, "clean and regular nature and a world in peace, freedom of thought and conscience must first be secured at the global level, especially religious and state structures."

He went on to say they are responsible for raising generations with a free conscience with all organizations.

Emphasizing the importance of science in the fight against natural disasters, Türkiye’s Chief Rabbi Isak Haleva said countries that are encountering various disasters and climate change should be paid attention to in particular.

Science and technology are promising for the future, Haleva added.

Turkish Syriac-Catholic Church Patriarchal Vicar Orhan Canli said: "We must cooperate, as we all benefit from nature's bounty. The universe is our common home. We have no other common home. This home also belongs to future generations."

The three-day summit, which began Tuesday, was organized by the Marmara Group Foundation in cooperation with the Istanbul Apparel Exporters’ Association and the Turkish Exporters' Assembly (TIM).


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