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Russian, Polish Religious Leaders Sign Document


Russian Orthodox Patriarch Kirill (left) walks with the head of the Polish Roman Catholic Church, Archbishop Jozef Michalik, prior to their meeting in Warsaw on August 16.
The Russian Orthodox and Polish Roman Catholic churches have signed a document in Warsaw calling on Poles and Russians to forgive each other for the dark chapters of their shared history.

The document was signed by Patriarch Kirill, the head of Russia's Orthodox Church, and Archbishop Jozef Michalik, the head of Poland's Catholic Church, in a lavish ceremony at Warsaw's historic Royal Castle.

The text said, "We call upon our faithful to pray for the forgiveness of injustices and all the wrongs committed against one another."

On August 16, Kirill met Catholic Church leaders and later Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski, who said that dialogue was a step toward reconciliation.

Kiril's four-day visit to Poland is the first by a head of the Russian Orthodox Church since the country regained independence after World War I.

With reporting by AFP and AP
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