Russian senators to discuss Jerusalem's religious shrines with Vatican

A delegation of the Federation Council's Committee on International Affairs, which is currently visiting Rome, is meeting with Vatican representatives on Tuesday to discuss preparations for a conference on the status quo of religious shrines in Jerusalem, Mikhail Margelov, the Chairman of the aforementioned committee, told RIA Novosti by telephone.

The purpose of the conference, according to Margelov, is to attract the attention of as large a part of the world community as possible to the status quo of religious shrines existing "in conditions of the drawn-out Israeli-Palestinian confrontation." The sacred shrines of Jerusalem "have often been the scene of military action," the senator reminded RIA Novosti.

The idea to hold a conference of this sort was proposed by the Russian side and supported by the Russian Orthodox Church, Ravil Gainutdin, the Chairman of Russia's Council of Muftis, and Amr Moussa, the Secretary-General of the Arab League.

The delegation is planning to discuss the issue with Jean-Louis Tauran, Vatican's Secretary for Relations with States.

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