Patriarch Kirill appealed to the UN and to the Pope in connection with the pressure on UOC
MOSCOW, December 14. /TASS/. The Patriarch of Moscow and all Russia Kirill has sent appeals to the leaders of the world churches, the General secretaries of the UN and the OSCE, the heads of France and Germany about the violation of the rights of bishops, clergy and faithful of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. About it reports on Friday, the Department for external Church relations (DECR) of the Russian Orthodox Church.
“Recently, the intervention of the secular leaders of the Ukrainian state in Church Affairs acquired the character of a rough pressure on the bishops and clergy of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, which suggests the beginning of a full-scale persecution”, — quotes the Patriarch of the DECR.
Pressure, violate constitutional rights and freedoms of citizens of Ukraine, is “to compel the bishops of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church to participate in this event [the”unification Council”]”, writes the Patriarch. He stressed that “the invitation to the “unification Council,” signed by Patriarch Bartholomew of Constantinople hierarchs of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church received from the hands of government officials. Meanwhile, article 35 of the Constitution of Ukraine States that “the Church and religious organizations are separate from the state,” and therefore noted in the ROC, “any interference of the state in international relations is unconstitutional.”
The Patriarch referred to the criminal cases against priests of inciting religious hatred, attempts to deprive the Church the rights to use the Kiev Pechersk Lavra and the Pochayiv Lavra, as well as aggressive information campaign from the media and leading politicians of the country.Newsof the SBU released a brochure about the “dangers” of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church
“Representatives of state authorities of the highest level allow themselves public statements with respect to the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, inciting sectarian strife”, — said the head of the Russian Orthodox Church.
“We don’t know what are the next steps of the Ukrainian authorities, on what other violations of basic and inalienable rights of man and citizen they can be solved to achieve this task, remaining until the presidential election time. But already had been numerous facts of discrimination of the Ukrainian Church give reason to fear even greater infringement of the rights and legitimate interests of Orthodox believers, multiplying their suffering for the faithful of the canonical Orthodox Church”, — concluded the Patriarch.