Khatami's four-day visit to Russia, the first by an Iranian leader since the Shah toured Russia in 1974, is aimed at expanding trade and technical cooperation with Russia.
In his speech to the Muslim community at Moscow's Central Mosque after prayers with (Moscow religious leader) Mufti Ravil Eynudin, he thanked the Russian government for respecting religious freedoms in Russia.
He said that after the collapse of the former Soviet Union the people enjoy freedom in holding religious rituals.
He said that Muslims and followers of other religions should observe coexistence with Orthodox christians and work for development and progress of Russia.
"Religions have a unique root and that's belief in God and a real believer is the one who loves science, kindness and justice. If we recognize religion as supporter of democracy, science and technology, then it would be the best service to religion," he said.
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