Spravdi, the Centre for Strategic Communications under the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy of Ukraine, has explained why the government decided to ban the activities of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate [UOC-MP] in Ukraine.
Source: Spravdi on Telegram
Quote from Spravdi: "Why did Zelenskyy ban the activities of the UOC-MP?
Religious organisations must not violate the rights and freedoms of citizens, not pose a threat to life, health and safety. But the objects of the UOC-MP violate these obligations by cooperating with the aggressor country."
Details: Spravdi emphasised that in the churches of the UOC-MP:
- Russian propaganda is being spread
- Activities of enemy secret services are being covered
- Russian agents are being recruited
Spravdi has noted that the Ukrainian Orthodox Church must prove that it has no canonical connection with the Moscow Patriarchate, which serves Putin’s regime and its goals in the aggressive war against Ukraine.
- During the past weeks, the Security Service of Ukraine conducted a number of searches on the premises of the UOC-MP in Kyiv and many oblasts. The searches are related to the propaganda of "Russian world" in churches of the UOC-MP. Some priests have been notified of suspicion.
- President Volodymyr Zelenskyy reported on 1 December that the National Security and Defence Council (NSDC) of Ukraine instructed the Cabinet of Ministers to propose that the Verkhovna Rada [the Ukrainian Parliament] institute a ban on the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate [UOC-MP], and also initiated a review of the legality of the UOC-MP’s presence at the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra (Monastery of the Caves).
- On 1 December, Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy put into effect personal sanctions against representatives of religious organisations affiliated with centres of influence in the Russian Federation. Later, sources of Ukrainska Pravda in the president's team reported that the National Security and Defence Council imposed sanctions against clergymen of the UOC MP, in particular, the vicar of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra Pavlo (Lebeda) and Vadym Novinskyi, former member of Ukrainian parliament.
- On the morning of 2 December, the Security Service of Ukraine conducted searches in a number of UOC-MP churches and monasteries in three oblasts.