Ukrainian flags on the square in front of the St. Sophia Cathedral in Kyiv. The cathedral was founded in 1011, under the reign of King Volodymyr the Great, who ruled Kyivan Rus from 980 to 1015.
The Russian special services and the “DNR” officials they control are organizing church marches in Kyiv, Odesa, Kharkiv, Zaporizhia, Kherson and Mykolayiv for Sunday, the day that the unification council of Ukrainian Orthodox Church will take place in an effort to disrupt it, Viktor Kononenko, the deputy head of Ukraine’s Security Service, the SBU, says.
According to the SBU official, the Russian security services held a meeting in Donetsk on December 6 to plan this and possibly other measures to distract attention from and spark protests against the church meeting.
Kononenko said that he was speaking about only part of the information that the SBU has obtained, an indication that Moscow may be planning other kinds of provocations as well. He urged Ukrainian organizations not to organize marches on the same day and called on Ukrainians to be vigilant against falling for these Russian actions.
Unfortunately, no one can exclude the possibility that Moscow may launch more serious military actions this weekend with the same purpose. One indicator of this danger is that the Russian media have stepped up their suggestions that Ukraine is planning an attack on Russian positions.
All too often, the most reliable early warning indicator of what Russia intends consists of its accusations that others are going to do what in fact Moscow plans to do itself.
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Tags: autocephaly, autocephaly for Ukrainian Orthodox Church, Moscow Patriarchate, Russian aggression, Russian Orthodox Church, Russo-Ukrainian War (2014-present), Ukrainian churches, Ukrainian Orthodox Church