President Vladimir Putin congratulated the Russian Hajj Mission on its 10th anniversary, and said that Islam has become integral to Russia’s religious, cultural and social fabric.
“Traditions of Islam are based on eternal values of kindness, mercifulness and justice. Millions of people in our country practice this ancient religion,” Putin wrote in a telegram published on the Kremlin’s website.
The letter was forwarded to the participants of the anniversary meeting, which took place in Grozny, the capital of the Republic of Chechnya, on Thursday.
Putin also saluted the Muslim community for being active participants in the country’s public life, developing broad charity initiatives and strengthening family values. The wider Muslim community is opposed to all forms of religious intolerance and extremism, the Russian President wrote.
“I want to stress that the state’s estimation of fruitful activities of Muslim organizations is very high and the state guarantees its citizens the opportunity to follow the norms of their religion including the pilgrimage to the holy places of Islam,” he said, adding that the Hajj Mission has made numerous strides in resolving issues related to Russian believers’ pilgrimages to Mecca, Saudi Arabia.