Archbishop: Crimean authorities want to turn church into a communal grave

2017/9/6 23:12:54

The Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyivan Patriarchate resents the actions of Russian security forces who blocked the church of the UOC-KP in Simferopol and the physical force against Archbishop Klyment [pictured] in his own church, the Patriarchate said in a written statement that called the actions of Russian security forces "impious", and expressed in this connection “a strong protest.”

 

 



From RISU, Sep 5, 2017

 

Archbishop Klyment of Simferopol and Crimea of the UOC-KP [Ukrainian Orthodox Church, Kyiv Patriarchate] has demanded that the Crimean branch of the FSB of Russia investigate actions of the security forces who blocked the temple of the Holy Equal-to-the Apostles Princess Olga and Prince Volodymyr in Simferopol on August 31, as well as to ensure the safety of the parishioners. Archbishop Klyment plans to file the relevant appeal with such requirements to the Kremlin-controlled Crimean government and the FSB of the annexed Crimea in the near future.

 

“The essence of the requirement is, firstly, to investigate the legality of actions of the federal prosecution service of the Central District in the city of Simferopol. The second issue is ensuring the security of the Kyivan Patriarchate's faithful in case of a terrorist act and a fire. For as of today, the federal judicial and executive service together with the Ministry of State Property have blocked and sealed all emergency exits,” the archbishop commented for Krym.Realii.

 

He considered such actions of the authorities as a “systematic act of transforming this building into a communal grave.” He also stressed that if emergency exits are not unblocked and an accident happens, “the full responsibility will rest with the FSB of Russia in the Crimea and Sevastopol.”

 

Archbishop Klyment told a correspondent of Krym.Realii that he failed to file a statement with such requirements on Monday, September 4, because the Crimea announced a holiday (on the occasion of the Muslim holiday Kurban Bayram -KR).

 

He plans to submit his requirements in writing and counts on a personal meeting with the Kremlin controlled head of the annexed Crimea Sergiy Aksyonov.

 

On September 1, Aksyonov canceled a scheduled meeting with Archbishop Klyment.

 

On the morning of August 31, Russian intelligence services blocked the Church of the Holy and Equal-to-the-Apostles Princess Olga and Prince Volodymyr in Simferopol. During the blockage of the church, Archbishop Klyment suffered an injury to his arm that was caused by the attackers.

 

Kremlin-controlled bailiffs in Crimea explained the blockade of the church by a ruling of the Russian court.

 

The Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Kyivan Patriarchate resents the actions of Russian security forces who blocked the church of the UOC-KP in Simferopol and the physical force against Archbishop Klyment in his own church, the Patriarchate said in a written statement that called the actions of Russian security forces "impious", and expressed in this connection “a strong protest.”

 

After the annexation of Crimea by Russia, the Kremlin-backed authorities seized some of the buildings of the Crimean diocese of the UOC-KP and held a competition for renting some of the premises of the church. Archbishop Klyment called on the world community to protect the national, cultural and religious rights of Ukrainian citizens in Crimea.

 

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*The article above appears through courtesy of the Religious Information Service of Ukraine. Access RISU at http://risu.org.ua/en/index

 


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