Catsimatidis: Hagia Sophia Conversion "Tragic," Calls for Unified Archon Front to Protect Religious Freedom

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Greek American businessman John Catsimatidis, in an interview with the Athens-Macedonian News Agency (ANA-MPA) and journalist Katia Tsimplaki, expressed his sorrow over the Turkish government's decision to convert Hagia Sophia into a mosque.

"It was tragic that the Turkish government decided to convert one of the world's oldest churches into a mosque," he lamented. Catsimatidis believes that the current political climate in Turkey makes it unlikely for this decision to be reversed anytime soon.

He also discussed the challenges faced by the Ecumenical Patriarchate, stating that its primary adversary is the Moscow Patriarchate, which aims to usurp its primacy within the Orthodox Church. Catsimatidis expressed pessimism about Turkey reversing its decision on Hagia Sophia and the Chora Monastery.

Regarding the 4th Archon International Conference on Religious Freedom, Catsimatidis explained to ANA-MPA that the goal was to unify Archons worldwide. “The purpose of this trip was to align all the Archons globally – from Europe to North America, to Australia, to Asia – and bring them together to create a greater power to protect our Ecumenical Patriarchate and our church," he stated. He drew parallels between the Archons and the Knights of Malta, emphasizing the need for a globally unified force to protect religious freedom.

Catsimatidis also addressed Russia's ongoing war against Ukraine and its attempts to undermine the Ecumenical Patriarchate and challenge the primacy of Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew. He believes that Russia desires control over the Ecumenical Patriarchate and sees the United States as crucial in safeguarding religious freedom and the Patriarchate itself. He expressed confidence in President Biden's support for the Patriarchate, citing his respect for Archbishop Elpidophoros of America and Protopresbyter Alex Karloutsos.

A staunch supporter of Donald Trump, Catsimatidis voiced his unwavering belief in Trump's ability to lead the United States effectively. He highlighted Trump's stance on issues like immigration, drug trafficking, and foreign influence, suggesting that Trump's firm approach is necessary to address these challenges. He believes a strong United States, under Trump's leadership, is essential for global stability and a stronger NATO.

Catsimatidis described Greek-American relations as “excellent” but acknowledged Turkey's strategic importance as an ally. He expressed concerns about Russia's trajectory under Putin, arguing that a perceived weakness in Washington's response emboldens countries like China, Russia, and Iran. He criticized the Biden administration's policies on fossil fuels, claiming they have inadvertently enriched Russia and Iran.

Overall, Catsimatidis’ interview provided a glimpse into his views on a range of geopolitical issues, highlighting his concerns about religious freedom, the role of the United States on the world stage, and the importance of strong leadership in navigating complex international relations.

Source Amna

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