Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has put into effect personal sanctions against representatives of religious organisations affiliated with centres of influence in the Russian Federation.
Source: Decree of the president of Ukraine No. 820/2022 on the decision of the National Security and Defence Council of Ukraine (RNBO) of 1 December
Details: On 1 December, the National Security and Defence Council of Ukraine adopted a decision "on certain aspects of the activities of religious organisations in Ukraine and the application of personal Special Economic and other restrictive measures (sanctions)". The president put it into effect on the same day.
The RNBO adopted the decision after considering the activities of religious organisations on the territory of Ukraine in the context of Russia's military aggression to ensure spiritual independence, prevent a split in society on religious grounds, promote the consolidation of Ukrainian society and protect the national interests of Ukraine.
Quote about the decision of the National Security and Defence Council: "Support the proposals made by the Security Service of Ukraine (SSU) regarding the application of personal Special Economic and other restrictive measures (sanctions).
Apply personal Special Economic and other restrictive measures (sanctions) to individuals in accordance with the document attached.
The Cabinet of Ministers, together with the Security Service of Ukraine and the National Bank of Ukraine, are to ensure the implementation and monitoring of the effectiveness of personal Special Economic and other restrictive measures (sanctions)."
Details: On 1 December, the president promised to publish the list of sanctioned names later.
In addition, the National Security and Defence Council instructed the Cabinet of Ministers to consider a draft law on preventing the activity in Ukraine of religious organisations affiliated with centres of influence in the Russian Federation.
Also, in two months, the government must ensure the legality and compliance with the conditions of use for religious organisations of the property located on the territory of the National Kyiv-Pechersk historical and cultural reserve.
Now, the Cabinet of Ministers must coordinate the work of the State Service of Ukraine on Ethnic Policy and Freedom of Conscience, which, in turn, must coordinate the structural divisions of local state administrations, whose authority include the implementation of the right to freedom of conscience and religion, and the activities of religious organisations.
The State Service for Ethnic Policy and Freedom of Conscience has been instructed to ensure a religious examination of the Charter on the administration of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church for the existence of a church-canonical connection with the Moscow Patriarchate within two months, and, if necessary, to take measures provided for by law.
The SSU, the police and other state bodies responsible for ensuring national security have been instructed to step up measures to identify and counteract the subversive activities of Russian special services in the religious environment of Ukraine.
- In October, the Security Service of Ukraine began to actively conduct searches in the buildings of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate in various oblasts of Ukraine: and investigative actions are ongoing.
- On 22 November, Ukraine’s Security Service conducted a counterintelligence operation within the Holy Dormition Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra, a monastery in Kyiv.