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Official says majority of Ukrainians are against Russian-affiliated church in Ukraine

Police and SBU officers entering a Moscow Patriarchate church. Photo: SBU
Official says majority of Ukrainians are against Russian-affiliated church in Ukraine

More than 80% of Ukrainians want a complete ban of the Moscow-affiliated Orthodox Church in Ukraine, the Chairman of the Subcommittee on Cultural Policy of the Committee on Humanitarian and Information Policy of the Ukrainian Parliament, Mykola Kniazhytskyi, claimed, as per UkrInform.

Since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine in 2022, the Security Service has been conducting searches in the churches of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC MP) and documented a number of violations there, including breaching of rent terms and links with Russian Security Service.

For instance, Metropolitan Pavlo (Petro Lebid) dubbed by Ukrainian media as “Pasha Mercedes” for his fondness for luxury cars and regular violations of traffic rules, was charged with fomenting religious enmity, justifying and denying Russian armed aggression against Ukraine after these searches.

SBU charges Moscow-linked Kyiv monastery abbot with inciting religious hatred and denying Russian aggression

However, Ukraine hasn’t imposed a full ban on the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate.

“I am absolutely convinced that we should ban the activities of the Russian church (UOC MP) in Ukraine. More than 80% of Ukrainian citizens want to ban the Russian church, and everything must be done to ensure that there is a vote on this (in the Verkhovna Rada).

There are many politicians who do not really realize what a threat to national security the Russian church poses. Those who do not want to vote must be convinced that they are obliged to do so and fulfill the will of the people,” Kiazhytskyi said.

Earlier, religious expert Roman Lunkin said the Kremlin made defending the Moscow Patriarchate a key part of Russian foreign policy.

Kremlin has made defending Moscow Patriarchate key part of Russian foreign policy, Russian expert says

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