New York, NY - His Eminence Archbishop Demetrios, Primate of the Greek Orthodox Church in America and Exarch of the Ecumenical Patriarchate, issued a statement condemning the recent terrorist attacks in Constantinople.
On Nov. 17, two days after the brutal attacks against two synagogues in Istanbul, Archbishop Demetrios visited the Ecumenical Patriarchate in Constantinople and, together with His All Holiness Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew, viewed the site of the devastating terrorist destruction at one of the synagogues, visited the Chief Rabbi of Constantinople Isaac Haleva at his headquarters and expressed his heartfelt condolences to the Jewish community and the victims? families.
Two days later, a second terrorist attack against British targets killed 26 people including Roger Short, the United Kingdom's Consul General in Istanbul, with whom Archbishop Demetrios had dinner just the day before, on the occasion of the new Archbishop of Canterbury visiting the Ecumenical Patriarchate.
Upon returning to the United States, Archbishop Demetrios made the following statement:
"I was appalled to witness the terrible destruction and senseless loss of life at the two synagogues in Constantinople. I share in the deep sorrow of the victims' families and I strongly condemn these and all terrorist attacks against people at prayer be it Jews, Christians or Moslems, and I urge adherence to the UN resolution (May 31, 2001) that protects and preserves religious sites and cultural heritage around the world."
In every corner of the universe, mankind is experiencing extremely difficult and unpredictable times. Let us work for peace, religious freedom and tolerance, and pray fervently that the Divine wisdom and love for one another will settle and reign in the hearts and minds of all human beings."