Ex-Head of Security Service of Ukraine Calls on UNESCO to Protect Pochayiv Monastery
Valentyn Nalyvaichenko, a public and political figure, ex-head of the Security Services of Ukraine, forwarded an address to Director-General of UNESCO Irina Bokova with a request to help prevent the exclusion of the Pochayiv Monastery in Ternopil Oblast from the list of buildings which are not subject to privatization and to include the monastery on the UNESCO World Heritage List.
In his address, posted by UNIAN.net, the politician expressed an opinion that the efforts to exclude the unique monument of world heritage, one of the greatest Christian shrines of Ukraine, from the list of buildings which are not subject to privatization can result in the loss historic heritage due “to uncontrolled use of the buildings” and can lead to restrictions on visits of representatives of different denominations.
He reminded that according to the Law of Ukraine on the List of Cultural Monuments Not Subject to Privatization, the buildings of the Pochayiv Monastery cannot be privatized.
However, Nalyvaichenko noted that the authorities are making steps to change the status of the historical monument.
According to the politician, a number of bills were submitted to the Supreme Council, which envisage possibilities to transfer the monastery to the Moscow Patriarchate.
The address stresses that one can see from the way the Moscow Patriarchate maintained another monument of historical and architectural value appearing on the list of UNESCO, the Kyiv Cave Monastery, that this object can be ruined without the due care of the state. “For instance, during the night of October 8, 2007, the historic gate at the entrance to the Lower Lavra was ruined to let heavy lorries enter the territory of the monastery,” said Nalyvaichenko.
“In view of the criminal inactivity of the state authorities, I am asking you to address urgently the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine with regard to the beginning of the procedure of the inclusion of the Pochayiv Monastery on the UNESCO World Heritage List. For, according to Article 49 of the Law of Ukraine on Protection of Cultural Heritage, the application for the inclusion on the UNESCO World Heritage List should be submitted by the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine upon a recommendation by the Central Body of the Executive Power in the area of protection of cultural heritage and the Ukrainian National Committee of the International Council on Monuments and Sites,” stressed Nalyvaichenko in his address.