Primate of Russian Orthodox Church sends letter to United Nations, Council of Europe, and OSCE concerning persecution of Ukrainian Orthodox Church in the situation of armed conflict in the south-east of Ukraine
On 18 August 2014, His Holiness Patriarch Kirill of Moscow and All Russia sent a letter to the United Nations, the Council of Europe, and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe, in which he mentioned numerous facts of gross violations of rights of the clergy and the faithful of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in the situation of the ongoing armed conflict in the south-east of Ukraine.
His Holiness Patriarch Kirill conveyed to the high-ranking addressees the concern of the Russian Orthodox Church over the attempts of the Uniates and schismatics to do harm to the canonical Orthodoxy in Ukraine by using the current difficult situation caused by the hostilities in the south-east of the country.
In his letter, the Primate of the Russian Orthodox Church mentions cases of tragic death of a number of clergymen of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, who have fallen victims to the armed internal conflict in Ukraine, and draws attention of the leaders of the international organizations to outrageous facts of violence against clerics of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church and to ongoing attempts to subject the clergymen to persecution and intimidation. Patriarch Kirill notes that severe material damage has been inflicted on churches and monasteries of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, which have become a last shelter for many thousands of refugees.
His Holiness Patriarch Kirill expresses his hope that the high international organizations will not remain indifferent to the problems which are facing the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, the largest religious organization in Ukraine. The Ukrainian Orthodox Church, remaining alien to any political engagement, continues to take pastoral care of millions of her faithful in the current very difficult situation, the Primate of the Russian Church noted. Patriarch Kirill calls the leaders of the United Nations, the Council of Europe, and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe to raise their authoritative voice in defence of Orthodox Christians in eastern Ukraine.