Vinnitsa official to answer for illegal transfers of communities to OCU

The head of the Vinnitsa RSA Department for Religious Affairs Igor Saletsky speaking in court. Photo: YouTube

The judge has further adjourned hearing the Saletsky case: the official may be removed from office for 2 months for illegal re-registration of communities to the OCU.

In Vinnitsa, the court has begun hearing the lawsuit against the head of the Vinnitsa RSA Department for Religious Affairs Igor Saletsky, who is accused of illegal re-registration of the religious communities of the Vinnitsa Eparchy of the UOC to the Orthodox Church, reports the online edition “33 Channel”.

The head of the Vinnitsa RSA Department for Religious Affairs can be removed from office for 2 months.

Saletsky himself did not agree with the accusations and stated that the religious communities of the UOC churches re-registered by him, including the church in Luka Meleshkovskaya, voluntarily expressed a desire to transfer to the new church structure.

“This is direct pressure on me because I performed my official duties in accordance with the law and did not grant preferences to anyone. There was a meeting and decisions of the religious community on the transfer to the OCU, and we accept relevant documents from people,” Saletsky said in court. “In particular, in this case we are talking about the well-known Luka Meleshkovskaya and Velikaya Kosnitsa in the Yampol region.”

The defendant called the suspicions that he could destroy or hide documents proving him guilty "complete nonsense" and "pressure" on him by the police.

According to Saletsky, he found out about the court late and therefore could not hire a lawyer. According to the Vinnitsa RSA official, it was for this reason that he asked the court to postpone the hearing on his case until Wednesday, when he could "defend himself according to the right of a citizen of Ukraine".

The official accused the plaintiffs of allegedly “pressuring him with removal”.

Investigating judge Igor Vyshar granted the request of Saletsky and decided to postpone the hearing of his case until 11:00 on October 10, 2019.

We recall that in February 2019, the Vinnitsa RSA threatened the UOC with checks and blackouts.

In June of the same year, activists of the OCU attempted to seize the Saviour Transfiguration Church of the UOC in Luka Meleshkovskaya. Adherents of the new church structure attacked the church during the liturgy, threatening one of the members of the religious community of the canonical Church to slaughter his family. For some reason, the OCU supporters beat and pushed those who, according to Saletsky, supposedly wanted to go to the newly created religious organization. Torn clothing and bruises were then recorded in photos and videos.

On September 28, 2019, the UOC religious community in Luka Meleshkovskaya and the police prevented another attempt by OCU activists to seize the temple of the canonical Church.

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