The head of Russia’s Orthodox Church has arrived in Poland for a historic visit that may be overshadowed by the Pussy Riot trial in Moscow.

Patriarch Kirill’s four-day visit is seen as a breakthrough in efforts to reconcile the two countries, divided by politics and religion for centuries.

Poland has a small Orthodox community but is overwhelmingly Roman Catholic.

Kirill’s stance on the punk group being tried over an obscene protest song in a cathedral is under scrutiny.

Verdicts in the trial are due on Friday.

Three of the musicians face imprisonment on charges of violating public order and inciting religious hatred, in a case which has sparked protests worldwide by musicians and human rights activists, who see their prosecution as being wildly disproportionate.

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