Russian Orthodox Church: All churches should be exempt from QR


Eastern Europe


The Christ, the Saviour cathedral in Moscow. Photo AFP, Kirill Kudryavtsev

The Russian Orthodox Church urges the Russian government to abandon the QR code for all churches.

The State Duma has made a draft resolution for a law on QR-codes in public spaces. With this QR-code, people can prove whether they are vaccinated against the coronavirus. The State Duma suggests that the faithful should be free to visit their church and that no QR-code is needed.

However, this exemption will only be valid for churches that belong to recognised religious organisations.

The Russian Orthodox Church opposes this idea. According to Abbess Xenia Chernega, who is head of the legal department of the Moscow Patriarchate, all churches should be exempted.

"We have a lot of temples that are owned by religious organisations, as well as temples which were built in an economical way, so-called unauthorised buildings", the abbess said. "The rights of religious organisations have not been formalised on these buildings."

There is religious freedom in Russia. However, the Russian Orthodox Church classifies several religious groups as "not traditional". Those groups are being outlawed, including the newest Protestant churches and Jehovah's Witnesses. There currently is a ban on Jehovah's Witnesses activities in Russia.



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