OSCE meeting in Warsaw reported about the facts of discrimination against UOC


Head of the Representative office of the UOC to the European international institutions Bishop Baryshevsky Victor

The representative of the UOC Bishop Baryshevsky Victor said at the meeting of the OSCE on the violation of the rights of believers of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.

13 September 2018 head of the Representative office of the UOC to the European international institutions Bishop Baryshevsky Victor spoke at the OSCE meeting in Warsaw, according to Information-enlightenment Department of the UOC.

Bishop Victor in his report noted that the position of the UOC in 2018 deteriorated due to the continuing violations of the rights of inefficient investigation of criminal proceedings and the continuation of incitement to religious hatred in relation to the UOC.

The representative of the UOC gave specific examples of ineffective enforcement of the faithful by the police. Lord Victor mentioned a high profile case about the beating of believers, the power structures in the village of Katerynivka in Ternopil region, as well as the illegal arrest of Church religious community in the village of Bird in Rivne region. In these and other cases, believers do not receive adequate protection, they still can’t return to them churches, and the perpetrators remain unpunished.

Lord Victor recalled that the Parliament still has not withdrew the unconstitutional draft laws # 4128, 4511, 5309, aimed at restricting the rights of believers of the UOC and the de facto destruction of the legal and canonical management system faith-based organizations. At the same time, the Ministry of culture refused to register the statutes of monasteries and dioceses of the UOC, depriving them of the ability to fully exist in the status of a legal entity.

Concerning discrimination in respect of the UOC also reported by human rights organizations. The representative of “Eastern human rights group”, Chairman of NGO “Public protection” Oleg Denisov stressed that “violations of the rights of believers of the UOC in Ukraine have signs of systemic limitations of human rights on the canonical identity of the countries that are trying illegal and contrary to international law to exert pressure on Orthodox faiths to force them <…> go to non-canonical religious groups close to government politicians.”

Earlier, the head of the OSCE decided to review information on violation of rights of believers of the UOC.

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