Yurii Reshetnikov: Viktor Yanukovych Does Not Violate Principles of Equal Rights and Equality of Religious Organizations
KYIV — On June 25, 2010, a press conference of the head of the State Committee of Ukraine on Nationalities and Religions, Yurii Reshetnikov, “Results of Activity of the State Committee on Nationalities and Religions During the First 100 Days of Work of the Government. Further Prospects,” was held at Ukrinform. According to Reshetnikov, the partner relations of the state and religious organizations continue to develop in Ukraine.
According to the official, public councils successfully work at the ministries and agencies. The number of them constantly increases. A public council has recently been set up at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The process of accreditation for theology has assumed new a dynamic.
The fear of the mass media as to exclusive favoritism of President Viktor Yanukovych for one of the churches has proved ungrounded according to Reshetnikov. In his opinion, Viktor Yanukovych as a person has a right to private acts of religious behavior but as Ukraine’s president, he does not violate the principles of equal rights and equality of religious organizations. All the religious organizations, the members of the All-Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations, were present at the inauguration and celebration of May 9.
The necessity to strictly observe the principles of equality were also voiced by Ukraine’s president in his own address. The patriarchal blessing, much discussed by the media, took place prior to the actual inauguration and concerned Viktor Yanukovych as a private person. Therefore, the principle of equal rights was not violated, stated Reshetnikov.