PATRIARCH, METROPOLITAN, AND PRESIDENT OFFER CONDOLENCES OVER METRO EXPLOSIONS

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Pravoslavie.ru – 3/4/17

As previously reported, two explosions went off in the St. Petersburg metro this afternoon, leaving at least ten dead and fifty injured. The subway system has been completely shut down.

His Holiness Patriarch Kirill has expressed his deepest condolences to the families of those killed in the explosions in the St. Petersburg metro, praying for the repose of the souls of the departed, and for the healing of those left injured.

“May the Lord strengthen the residents of St. Petersburg in connection with the tragedy that has befallen all of us,” reads the patriarchal condolences, as quoted by pravmir.ru.

Condolences have also gone out from Metropolitan Barsanuphius of St. Petersburg and Ladoga: “We have deep sorrow in our hearts from the news about the bombings that occurred in the St. Petersburg metro which killed, hurt, and wounded innocent people. I pray for the repose of the souls of the innocent victims who died, and the healing of those who were injured, and the comfort of their families and friends,” the metropolitan’s message reads.

Priests will be sent to every hospital where the wounded are sent, to offer spiritual support to the victims and their loved ones. All possible spiritual and material aid will be offered by the diocese with the blessing of the metropolitan. The head of the diocesan Department for Charity and Social Services Archpriest Nikolai Bryndin is in communication with the St. Petersburg and Leningrad region Emergency Department and the St. Petersburg Committee for Social Policy.

In his turn, President Vladimir Putin, in St. Petersburg for a meeting with Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko, stated, “Unfortunately, we have to start our meeting with this tragic event. The reasons for it are as yet unclear, so it’s too early to talk about that. The investigation will reveal the reasons. But, of course, we always consider all possibilities—domestic and criminal, and above all, terroristic actions,” as quoted by Interfax.

The president also stated that he has already been in contact with the heads of the special services and the director of the FSB. “Law enforcement agencies and the special services are working, and will do everything in order to identify the causes of the incident, and give a full assessment of what happened,” he added.

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