"We will never accept the church schism in Ukraine and will protect the Russians," - the Russian Orthodox Church
"The religious aspect in Putin's article occupies a small place in terms of the number of characters, but in terms of content - one of the central ones. Today, "freedom of conscience" is used as a technology to split a single people into warring groups. We are talking about the separation of those Russians who now live in Ukraine from Russians in Russia. For this purpose, an artificial religious split is created. The president calls this factor along with others - territorial, cultural, and linguistic. So we are not talking about a confrontation within Orthodoxy, for example, because of the emergence of heresies, but about an artificial split organized by political forces," Shchipkov said. His words were shared by the official website of the Russian Orthodox Church.
As for Putin's phrase "we will never agree with this," the expert claims:
"In this sense, this is a very harsh text. We are talking about the fact that we will defend the interests of Russians on the territory of Ukraine. We are one people, and we will not betray our own people. They make anti-Russia out of Ukraine, but we will never be anti-Ukrainians," the source explained. "In the article, Putin speaks as a person with a historical responsibility."
The article of the president of the Russian Federation "on the historical unity of Russians and Ukrainians" was published on July 12 on the Kremlin's website.