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LDS Church: Oregon Militia Takeover Not 'Justified On A Scriptural Basis'

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AP Photo / Mark Graves

"Church leaders strongly condemn the armed seizure of the facility and are deeply troubled by the reports that those who have seized the facility suggest that they are doing so based on scriptural principles," the Mormon Church's statement read. "This armed occupation can in no way be justified on a scriptural basis."

Ammon Bundy, son of infamous Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy, said in a video published Friday that "the Lord was not pleased with what was happening to the Hammonds," referring to the two Oregon ranchers facing prison time for arson.

Bundy and other armed militants, who are not all from Oregon, have holed up since Saturday at the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge near Burns, Oregon. They've said they will occupy the space for years, if necessary.

The church's statement urged "peaceful means" to end the conflict.

Read the full statement below:

While the disagreement occurring in Oregon about the use of federal lands is not a Church matter, Church leaders strongly condemn the armed seizure of the facility and are deeply troubled by the reports that those who have seized the facility suggest that they are doing so based on scriptural principles. This armed occupation can in no way be justified on a scriptural basis. We are privileged to live in a nation where conflicts with government or private groups can - and should - be settled using peaceful means, according to the laws of the land.