Confessions call government to renew activity of Committee for Ensuring Rights of Religious Organizations
Heads and authorized representatives of churches and religious organizations addressed Ukraine's Prime Minister Mykola Azarov with a request to renew the activity of the Committee for Ensuring the Rights of Religious Organizations of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, reports the Institute of Religious Freedom.
The address says that it is necessary to discuss legislative initiatives regarding the freedom of confession and activity of religious organizations at the sessions of the committee.
Specifically, the address concerns the ammended Law of Ukraine on Freedom of Conscience and Religious Organizations, a bill on the restitution of religious buildings to religious organizations and changes in the registration procedure for religious organizations.
"The above-mentioned legislative initiatives directly concern the constitutional right to the freedom of religion and activity of religious organizations; therefore, it should be developed in the dialogue and with obligatory consultations with churches and religious organizations," reads the address.
According to representatives of the confessions, in the format of the mentioned committee, coordinated proposals and recommendations for the Cabinet of Ministers can be developed with the consideration of the opinion of religious organizations as interested subjects of the public.
According to Paragraph 7 of the Regulation on the Committee, a number of the members of the Committee for Ensuring the Rights of Religious Organizations addressed its head, Vice Prime Minister Borys Kolesnikov, with an initiative to hold in the nearest future an extraordinary session to consider the mentioned issues.
The following churches addressed the government:
Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Moscow Patriarchate;
Ukrainian Orthodox Church-Kyivan Patriarchate;
Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church;
All-Ukrainian Union of Churches of Christians of Evangelical Faith-Pentecostals;
All-Ukrainian Union of Churches of Evangelical Christians Baptists;
Ukrainian Christian Evangelical Church;
Association of Jewish Religious Organizations;
Spiritual Directorate of Muslims of Ukraine.
The Committee for Ensuring the Rights of Religious Organizations was set up by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine in 2008 as a permanent advisory body.
No sessions of the committee have been held since 2009.