Ukraine in the UN Security Council: Russia is not protecting but destroying the UOC-MP

18.11.2023, 09:00
Ukraine and world
Ukraine in the UN Security Council: Russia is not protecting but destroying the UOC-MP - фото 1
Ukraine's representative at the UN Security Council pointed out that Russia, purportedly protecting the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP), is actually destroying it by seizing Ukrainian parishes, churches, and property.

As reported by Ukrinform's correspondent in New York, this was stated by Ukraine's counselor at the Permanent Mission of Ukraine, Natalia Mudrenko, during the Security Council session.

Russia convened this session to discuss the alleged persecution of Russian Orthodoxy in Ukraine.

"Moscow once again used the platform of the Security Council to advance the interests of the Russian Orthodox Church, de facto a state church in Russia. Since the beginning of the invasion, this institution has been responsible for ideological support of the aggression, and its leader, Kirill (Gundyayev), promotes narratives of military propaganda in line with the Kremlin," Mudrenko stated.

She highlighted that Kirill instills in his flock the belief that the war against Ukraine is "pleasing to God."

Moreover, Mudrenko emphasized, "He fairly evaluates the role of his institution in the aggressive war: he does not waste time preaching about peace and does not refer to biblical commandments such as 'thou shalt not kill'; instead, he directly calls for mobilization. This includes the Church, which should 'pray for the authorities and the military, and also be at the forefront.'"

Thus, it's not surprising that in Russia, priests who attempt to advocate for peace as the main value face internal church repression, Mudrenko added.

Ukraine's counselor reminded that the Russian Orthodox Church itself participates in the occupation, having captured all three Crimean dioceses of the UOC in 2022. In July 2023, the Moscow Patriarchate stole three more dioceses in Luhansk, Alchevsk, and Rovenky.

"I'll remind you that these actions were taken against the same Church whose rights the Russian delegation claims to protect by demanding this session," the diplomat stressed, adding that the aggressor has spread the repressive practices existing in Russia to the occupied territories.

She also informed that according to recent data, over 500 religious objects in Ukraine have been damaged, with 100 completely destroyed.

Additionally, Mudrenko explained the essence of proposed amendments to Ukrainian legislation regarding the activities of religious organizations. Its clear goal is to "counter attempts by the aggressor state to use religious organizations in Ukraine for aggression purposes."

If the corresponding law is adopted, the activities of religious organizations affiliated with the leadership of the aggressor country will be prohibited.

"All religious organizations whose affiliation with the aggressor state is not established by the court will be able to continue their activities," Mudrenko emphasized.

Previously, in early November, the Patriarch of the Russian Orthodox Church, Kirill (Gundyayev), was declared a suspect in the case of encroaching upon the territorial integrity and inviolability of Ukraine, as well as justifying Russia's armed aggression.

It was reported that within a year, Russia convened the UN Security Council for the third time to discuss the alleged persecution of the Russian Church in Ukraine. Moreover, Moscow raised this issue at an informal meeting of the Security Council under the Arria Formula.