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Estonian Parliament designates Moscow Patriarchate as sponsor of Russian aggression

Estonia’s Parliament passed a statement condemning the Moscow Patriarchate for justifying Russia’s aggression against Ukraine. The statement declares it a sponsor of military efforts, and calls for international action against its hostile influence operations.
Vladimir Putin and Patriarch Kirill
Russian President Vladimir Putin (L) during a meeting with Primate of the Russian Orthodox Church Patriarch Kirill (R). Source: Wikimedia Commons
Estonian Parliament designates Moscow Patriarchate as sponsor of Russian aggression

On 6 May, Estonia’s Riigikogu (Parliament) passed a statement condemning the Moscow-based Russian Orthodox Church, or Moscow Patriarchate, for justifying and supporting Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, and declared it an institution that sponsors Russia’s military aggression, according to ERR News.

In the statement, the Riigikogu condemns Russia’s war against Ukraine and unlawful territorial annexations, highlighting that Russian President Vladimir Putin’s regime, with its nuclear threats, poses a significant global and European peace threat.

Ever since the Russian Federation launched its full-scale war against Ukraine in 2022, Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Rus has expressed his public support to the act of aggression of the terrorist regime of the Russian Federation,” the statement reads.

It further noted that the leaders of the Moscow Patriarchate, including Patriarch Kirill, have been propagating the ‘Russian World’ ideology to support the war. This ideology is used to undermine the remnants of Russian democracy, militarize Russian society, and justify aggression aimed at expanding Russia to territories it had previously historically controlled, including Ukraine.

The Riigikogu statement noted that the “Present and Future of the Russian World,” a policy document endorsed by the World Russian People’s Council under the ROC’s auspices and led by the Moscow patriarch, characterizes the Ukraine conflict as a holy war against both Ukraine and the West. It also asserts a claim over territories beyond the former Russian Empire as within the Russian Federation’s sphere of influence.

The statement also emphasizes that the Moscow Patriarchate’s rhetoric poses a serious threat to Estonia’s security, including direct risks to its public and constitutional order.

In its statement, the Riigikogu strongly denounces the Moscow Patriarchate, declaring it an institution that supports and justifies Russian aggression, and officially labels it as a sponsor of Russia’s military efforts. Furthermore, the Riigikogu calls on all states and the international community to actively suppress the Moscow Patriarchate’s hostile influence operations. The statement specifies that this condemnation pertains to the institution and its leadership, not to individuals who adhere to Orthodox traditions.

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