A “debate on the relationship between the State and religious organisations” will be taking place in St Petersburg on May 16th as part of the VIII International Legal Forum of St Petersburg (15-19 May). Guest speakers, including leaders of Russian traditional and international confessions, as well as legal experts, will take part in the debate, which was an idea of the president of the Russian Duma committee for the development of society, public and religious matters, Hon. Sergey Gavrilov, who will act as a chairman. Several areas will be addressed in the afternoon, such as “legal disputes between the State and religious organisations”, even regarding properties, “public control over the work of religious organisations”, “legal aspects of the protection of believing citizens’ religious feelings”, and new regulations for the protection “of citizens’ rights from the offences of cults and extremist religious organisations”. The list of guest speakers includes Varsonofy, metropolitan bishop of St Petersburg, Isidor, metropolitan bishop of Smolensk, Kseniya Chernega, Abbess in charge of the legal service of the Patriarchate of Moscow, Krganova lbir Rifkatovich, mufti and president of the Russian Muslims’ assembly, Alayutdinov Ildar Rifatovich, mufti of Moscow, Alexander Moiseevich I Travi, president of the Federation of Russian Jewish communities, Celestino Migliore, apostolic nuncio, and Dietrich Brower, Lutheran archbishop.