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On 12th June 2019, Russia Day, Hegumen Arseniy (Sokolov), representative of the Patriarch of Moscow and All Russia to the Patriarch of Antioch and All the East, visited Russia’s Hmeimim airbase located in Latakia province, Syria. To mark this Russian national holiday, a military parade was held on the aerodrome.

After the parade, Hegumen Arseniy (Sokolov); Colonel General Andrei Serdyukov, commander of the group of Russian forces in Syria; Mr. Alexander Yefimov, Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the Russian Federation to the Syrian Arab Republic; and staff members of the Russian Embassy, accompanied by Rev. Yevgeny Andreyev, who carries out his pastoral ministry at the airbase, proceeded to the Church of the Holy Great Martyr George the Victory-Bearer. There a prayer service was celebrated.

Later, a reception took place at the officers’ mess. On behalf of His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia Hegumen Arseniy greeted the commander, the officers and all the Russian soldiers serving at Hmeimim, wishing them the successful completion of the military mission and the soonest re-establishment of peace in Syria.

DECR Communication Service