Archbishop Klyment: In Crimea, FSB Exerts Pressure on Priests
According to Archbishop Klyment, Crimea returns to the communist times.
In the Russian-occupied Crimea officers of the Federal Security Service of Russia exert psychological pressure on the priests of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyiv Patriarchate, stated Archbishop Klyment of Simferopol and Crimea (Pavlo Kusch).
“Some priests were forced to sign papers on cooperation with the FSB. We are going back to the distant communist times, when the KGB exerted influence on clergymen,” he said, adding that the main issues the FSB representatives are interested in relate to the activities of archbishop Klyment, his circle of contacts, his plans, and travel routes.
However, despite the current situation, Archbishop of Simferopol and Crimea does not plan to leave the peninsula.
“I come from Crimea and will not leave on my own will. First, my flock is here, and second, I am an indigenous Crimean resident. Third, I do not have the blessing to do so. All that was done over the past years was made with my hands and the hands of my parishioners, and it would be a spiritual crime to cast it adrift,” said Archbishop Klyment.
As previously reported, only 9 priests out of 15 priests of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church – Kyiv Patriarchate remained in Crimea, according to Krym.Realii