UOC will defend their rights by all legitimate means.
UOC intend to appeal the law requiring Ukrainian Orthodox Church in its name to indicate the affiliation to the Russian Orthodox Church, in the constitutional court of Ukraine.
The Ukrainian Orthodox Church since 1990, officially registered in the state bodies with the same name and stays with him in the future, said the head of the legal Department of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church Archpriest Oleksandr bakhov in an interview with the educational Department of the UOC.
“We intend to defend their rights by all legitimate means. We sent a letter to the President of Ukraine to veto, but, as we see it such right is not used. In addition, as a violation of constitutional norms and principles, we initiate the appeal to the constitutional court”, – said the head of the legal Department, noting that a broader understanding of human rights actions will appear after the law enters into force and implementation begins.
Archpriest stressed that any attempt by the state to force the Church to change its name are illegal and are regarded from the point of view of international law as interference in the internal Affairs of religious groups. In addition, the decision to change the name of the Church can only be made by its parent body, the Council of the UOC, so “even if the law will come into force, it will not mean that the Ukrainian Orthodox Church and its institutions automatically lose their names”.
As reported by the SPM, 22 December the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko has signed anti-Catholic bill No. 5309 “On amendments to the law of Ukraine “On freedom of conscience and religious organizations” regarding the name of religious organizations, which are included in the structure (is part of) a religious organization, the governing center of which is located outside of Ukraine…”
Earlier, on December 20, the deputies 240 votes supported the draft law No. 5309, which obliges the UOC to change its name.