OCU "hierarch" Alexander (Drabinko) sues His Beatitude Onuphry

"Metropolitan" Alexander of Pereyaslav-Khmelnitsky and Vishnevoe. Photo: KP.UA

The Pechersk Court of Kiev opened proceedings against the UOC Primate on the claim of OCU "bishop" Alexander (Drabinko) because of the UOC Synod’s Appeal to Poroshenko.

On May 22, 2019, the former UOC metropolitan, and now the OCU “bishop” Alexander (Drabinko) published the decision of the Kiev Pechersk District Court to open the proceedings on the suit against His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry of Kiev and All Ukraine.

The “bishop” of the OCU filed a lawsuit statement with the wording “on the protection of honour, dignity, business reputation and compensation for moral (non-property) damage” because of the Open Appeal of the Holy Synod of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church to the President of Ukraine Petro Poroshenko, in which, according to him, his name was “mentioned very negatively".

The Appeal of the Holy Synod of the UOC related to the evaluation of the investigation into the circumstances of the last years of the late His Beatitude Metropolitan of Kiev and All Ukraine Vladimir. The document states that the hierarchs of the UOC see this case as an attempt of political pressure on the people's deputy Vadim Novinsky and regret that Alexander Drabinko, who was a bishop of the canonical Church at that time, was one of the sources of the “information mud”.

In the commentary to the court decision, the current “hierarch” of the OCU informs about the reasons for filing the lawsuit: “As a Christian and priest, I prayerfully wish the people's deputy of Ukraine Vadim Vladislavovich Novinsky, who was advocated by members of the Holy Synod, peace with God and salvation of the soul. At the same time, since my name was mentioned very negatively in the Appeal of the Holy Synod, immediately after the publication of the Appeal, I sent an open letter to His Beatitude Metropolitan Onuphry and the entire episcopate of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, in which I pointed to the groundlessness of the accusations and their fictional, slanderous nature.”

“Bishop” Alexander claims that since he did not receive a response to the letter, on February 15, 2019, he applied for opening a case to the Pechersk District Court of Kiev.

Three months later, on May 22, 2019, the court sent Alexander Drabinko a notice that it did not see any reason for the refusal to open the proceedings and scheduled a preparatory hearing for May 29, 2019.

We recall that on November 14, 2016, the Synod of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church demanded that President Petro Poroshenko should put an end to the use of the Church "in political manipulations and the settling of accounts between political opponents". The Appeal of the Holy Synod of the UOC to the head of state emphasized that an example of such a policy was criminal proceedings to investigate the circumstances of the last years of the late Metropolitan of Kiev and All Ukraine Vladimir, in which the MP Vadim Novinsky and the former Metropolitan Alexander (Drabinko) appeared.

The Appeal indicated that criminal proceedings are an example of pressure on political opponents through the Church, referring to an attempt to lift parliamentary immunity from the people's deputy Vadim Novinsky.

The greatest harm from the resonance around the investigation, according to the Synod, was caused to the memory of His Beatitude Metropolitan Vladimir.

“The fact that Metropolitan Alexander (Drabinko) of Pereyaslav-Khmelnitsky and Vishnevoe became the source of information mud makes the situation shameful,” the statement said. “Without informing the church authorities of the fact that he knew some important facts, he decided to spread rumours and slander through the mass media. Trying to avoid responsibility under the law regarding the reasonable suspicions of complicity in a high-profile crime, this bishop consciously became a tool of political struggle, neglecting morality and discrediting the service of the deceased Primate.”

“Consciously distancing itself from the essence of the political discussion”, the Synod declared that it was absolutely unacceptable to use the UOC as a tool for political struggle.

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