Filaret asks Pope Francis to facilitate the release of Vitaly Markiv, a national guardsman imprisoned in Italy
This is reported by the press service of the UOC-KP.
Filaret called Markiv an example of Ukrainian invincibility.
"You are still a young man, but you are already an example of a real conscious Ukrainian. Having lived in Italy for a long time, you did not stop loving your homeland, and when it found itself in trouble, you did not hesitate to return to fight for its Independence and future," the hierarch wrote.
"I call on the Ukrainians who now live in Italy to show their civil position and use all legal methods to achieve a fair trial by joining the international campaign 'Free Markiv'.
I appeal to His Holiness Pope Francis, the international and human rights community, to pay attention to this situation and, for my part, to intercede before the Italian Government about an unbiased trial in the case of Ukrainian Vitaly Markiv," Filaret wrote.
Vitaly Markov is a Senior Sergeant of the General Serhiy Kulchytsky Operational Battalion of the National Guard of Ukraine, a participant of the Revolution of Dignity and the Russian-Ukrainian war, in particular the battles for Sloviansk, and a citizen of Ukraine and Italy.
On July 12, 2019, a court in the Italian city of Pavia sentenced Markiv to 24 years in prison for his possible involvement in the death of Italian photographer Andrea Rocchelli in the Donbas in May 2014. Markiv was placed in the correctional colony "Opera" in Milan, where criminals are serving sentences for major crimes.
Marcia Italian lawyer Raffaele Della Valle points to the absurdity of the charges.
On November 20, Ukraine filed an appeal against the verdict.
On August 31, 2020, Ukrainian Interior Minister Arsen Avakov said that the National Police of Ukraine has evidence of Markiv's innocence.
The defense of Ukrainian national guardsman Vitaly Markiv in Italy filed new exculpatory evidence in this case to the Court of Appeal on September 11.