Just a day after the harsh statements of the US Ambassador to Athens over Russian interference in Church matters, the Russian Embassy in Athens with its twitter posts picks up the gauntlet accusing the US Embassy of arrogance and amateurism.
“The ease with which US diplomats are positioned on this delicate and complex issue that has even divided the clergy and prominent theologians is surprising,” the Russian Embassy said on its twitter page.
“Such arrogant (as usual), superficial, amateurish treatment reveals Washington’s speculative approach that de facto despises the unity of Orthodoxy and deliberately undermines it. The US does not hesitate to interfere in the ecclesiastical aspects of the matter by tooling religion, while even the Greek Government itself declares: “Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and unto God the things that are God’s”.
1/3 Εκπλήττει η ευκολία με την οποία οι Αμερικανοί διπλωμάτες τοποθετούνται για το λεπτό και περίπλοκο αυτό ζήτημα που έχει διχάσει ακόμα και τους κληρικούς και διακεκριμένους θεολόγους. pic.twitter.com/f6nbHwsa7D
— Rus Embassy, Greece (@RFEmbassyGr) November 13, 2019
The reason for this harsh reaction of the Russian Embassy was Pyatt’s statement during a conference on ecclesiastical diplomacy in Athens, that “Russia uses religion as part of a hybrid strategy, as a tool to achieve its political goals and the dissemination of false narratives and perceptions.”
“Instead of ridiculous accusations regarding the ‘Russian hybrid threat’, US officials should be concerned with real problems, such as the elimination of the tragic consequences for the European continent of the destabilizing US policy in the Middle East and elsewhere,” replied the Russian Embassy.
It is the first time that the two diplomatic missions in Greece have such a fierce public conflict since the day the Ukrainian ecclesiastical issue began.