UOC announces a press conference on religious conflicts

The press conference "UOC in March: the reaction of international organizations, lawsuits, religious conflicts in the regions – figures and facts" to be held at the Lavra

The UOC announces a press conference "UOC in March: the reaction of international organizations, lawsuits, religious conflicts in the regions – facts and figures".

The press conference will be held at the Kiev-Pechersk Lavra (building 70-A) at 15.00 on March 26.

The press conference participants: Archbishop Clement (Vecheria), chairman of the Synodal Information and Education Department of the UOC, Bishop Victor (Kotsaba), head of the UOC Representative Office to European International Organizations, Archpriest Alexander Bakhov, chairman of the Synodal Law Department of the UOC, Fr. Oleg Tochinsky, head of the Volyn Eparchy press service, and believers of the affected communities.

An interactive map of the seizures of temples of UOC religious communities will be presented at the press conference.

There will also be provided information about the lawsuit from the Kiev Metropolis of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church against the Ministry of Culture of Ukraine on lifting the order on approving the religious expert examination to establish a list of religious organizations (associations) subject to the norms of Part 7 and Part 8 of Art. 12 of the Law of Ukraine "On Freedom of Conscience and Religious Organizations".

The UOC reports that on March 26, 2019, at the same time, when the conference is held in Kiev, a preventive measure will be chosen in the Rovno City Court against the head of the Department for Resolving Interfaith Conflicts in the Rovno Eparchy of the UOC Archpriest Victor Zemlianoy, who was charged with criminal offenses under Part 1 of Art. 161 and Part 1. of Art. 300 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine.

Art. 161 provides criminal liability for “willful actions inciting national, racial or religious enmity and hatred, humiliation of national honor and dignity, or the insult of citizens' feelings in respect to their religious convictions” and Art. 300 – for “Importation into Ukraine for sale or distribution purposes, or making, storage, transportation or other movement for the same purposes, or sale or distribution of works that propagandize violence and cruelty".

In addition, the press conference participants will inform about the activities of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in March at the international level, the reaction of the international community to the violation of the rights of believers of the UOC, legal work and lawsuits. Using the example of the Volyn Eparchy of the UOC, the mechanism of the seizure of churches characteristic of all regions, the violation of rights on religious ground, and cases of beating believers will be considered.

Journalists will be able to talk with believers from the affected communities of the Volyn Eparchy of the UOC who will arrive at the press conference.

Accreditation of media representatives is on the phone (066) 095 14 76.

Access for the accredited media by press card.

The UOJ editorial board reminds: in case of violation of the rights of the episcopate, clergy, laity and institutions of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (obstruction of worship, seizure of temples, committing acts of provocations and pressure, threats, etc.), one should immediately contact the Legal Department of the UOC on the phone: 097- 537-55-96.

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