On November 26th, in the Mother See, His Holiness Karekin II, Supreme Patriarch and Catholicos of All Armenians; received Ayatollah Mohammad Hassan Akhtari, General Secretary of the Ahl al-Bayt World Assembly.
His Holiness welcomed Ayatollah Akhtari’s visit to Armenia and the Mother See of Holy Etchmiadzin, and noted that such visits will not only contribute to the strengthening of bilateral mutual cognition and inter-religious dialogue, but also have a positive impact on the children of our two faithful peoples, to live a peacefully and creatively life.
Emphasizing the need for inter-religious dialogue, His Holiness stressed that as political figures, spiritual leaders also can have an important role in case of the implementation of acts of terrorism and crime prevention in different sides of the world and
overcoming their consequences that today often disguises terrorism by religious factor. In this regard, His Holiness condemned the terrorist act in France, and also expressed concern regarding the current critical situation in the Middle East.
In his remarks, the Catholicos of All Armenians reflected on the historical ties and development of the Armenian-Iranian relations.
Ayatollah Mohammad Hassan Akhtari expressed gratitude for the invitation and warm reception, praising the Almighty that the warm relations between the two friendly nations are expanding in various areas.
The General Secretary of the Ahl al-Bayt World Assembly also stressed the importance of inter-religious dialogue, noting that mutual cooperation between the religious primates would serve as a good example to the people of the world, and will guide them towards the noble and cherished values preached by all religions.
Ayatollah Mohammad Hassan Akhtari reflected on the manifestations of extremism. He stressed that no religion calls to kill any of God’s creatures, and the duty of religious leaders is to strongly condemn all those abusing the religious beliefs of people.
During the meeting, His Holiness and the General Secretary also spoke about the spiritual education of the younger generation and the readiness of clergy. Expansion of inter-religious cooperation and the undertaking of joint steps were emphasized as the way to overcome various problems and challenges facing humanity.
At the conclusion, His Holiness once again conveyed his best wishes to Ayatollah Mohammad Hassan Akhtari, asking for God’s blessings on the life of the friendly nation.
The meeting was attended by His Eminence Archbishop Nathan Hovhannisyan, Director of the External Relations and Protocol Department of Mother See; His Grace Bishop Arshak Khachatryan, Chancellor of the Mother See; His Grace Bishop Hovnan Hakobyan, Grand Sacristan of the Mother See; His Grace Bishop Vardan Navasardyan, Director of the Christian Education Center of the Mother See; Rev. Fr. Zakaria Baghumyan, Director of the Bishop’s Synod Office of the Armenian Church; and Mr. Seyed Kazem Sajjad, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Islamic Republic of Iran to the Republic of Armenia.