Moscow, May 8,- China values the contribution made by the Russian Orthodox Church in the joint fight against fascism, Chinese leader Xi Jinping said at the beginning of a meeting with Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia at the Kremlin on Thursday.
The Chinese leader headed for the meeting with the patriarch straight after talks with Russian President Vladimir Putin.
Xi recalled his first meeting with the patriarch two years ago. "I think it enabled you to know our country deeper and do more to develop the Russian-Chinese relationship," he said
"I can well remember how during our conversation you told me that preserving the Russian national traditions, the nation's interests and values is the task of paramount importance for the Russian Orthodox Church," he went on.
The Chinese leader added that his current visit to Russia is timed to coincide with the 70th anniversary of the Victory in the Great Patriotic War.
"In those years the Russian Orthodox Church urged people to defend their country, urged them to serve loyally to defend its sovereignty and territorial integrity and provide security for their country. We highly appreciate Russian Orthodox Church's contribution in the joint fight against fascism," he said.
For his part, Patriarch Kirill praised their 2013 meeting. "I can recall that remarkable visit I made to China and our first conversation that enabled me to understand a lot, in particular, how seriously you take the role of culture, traditions, and the moral factor in the formation of national life and in the formation of human individuality," he said.
The Chinese president is in Moscow on a formal visit. On May 9 he will attend the festivities in honor of the Victory Day, including a parade in Red Square.