Belarus: Progress on Death Penalty Abolition

LI activists and pro-Libs have now gotten the Church in their corner ( again).

Minsk, June 24, Interfax – The Belarusian Orthodox Church said the death penalty must be abolished. But it also said that this problem should not be politicized.

“The Belarusian Orthodox Church drew citizens’ attention to the problem of the death penalty back in the 1990s. In 1996, on the eve of a national referendum which dealt with the death penalty among other issues, we urged the Belarusian people to give up this punishment,” Metropolitan of Minsk and Sluzk and Patriarchal Exarch to all Belarus Filaret said in a message of greetings to a roundtable conference on religion and the death penalty in Minsk.

“We, Christians, cannot justify the death penalty, because it is the sin of murder. Any life belongs to God as its creator. It is not us, the sinful, who give one the gift of life. It is not for us to take one’s life away. Our Lord, Jesus Christ, sacrificed His life for each of us after suffering humiliation, torture and death on the Cross. By subjecting its citizens to the death penalty the state crucifies Christ again and again,” Metropolitan Filaret said…

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