08 February 2019

Today, my colleague Aleksandr Dolzhenkov from the Opposition Bloc faction, and myself submitted a petition to the Constitutional Court on behalf of 47 MPs requesting to recognize unconstitutional the adopted law on freedom of conscience and religion.

Referring to Article 35 of the Constitution of Ukraine, we advocate that everyone's right for freedom of religion should be exercised and adhered to. The unconstitutional Law of Ukraine "On Freedom of Conscience and Religious Organizations", adopted on 17 January 2019, contains a number of provisions that testify to government’s interference with and deliberate over-regulation of religious organizations' activities. This is an outrageous breach of our citizens' rights. We, the MPs from the Opposition Bloc faction, believe that the law passed with gross violations of the rules of procedure is contrary to the Constitution of Ukraine! In addition, it grossly infringes the rights of one of the denominations, the canonical Orthodox Church, and is aimed at its discrimination. The essence of this law is to do so that to facilitate the transition of parishes from the canonical Orthodox Church to the newly created, the so-called Orthodox Church of Ukraine, which is essentially a political organization. Thanks to this law, our canonical church will have to rewrite all of its charters for registration with the Ministry of Justice. And the state, in its turn, will dictate to the church how it shall call itself, and will decide on what should be in its charters.

This is a violation of Article 35 of the Constitution, which stipulates that the church be separated from the state. Therefore, we ask the Constitutional Court to recognize this law as unconstitutional one! No religion can be recognized by the state as being mandatory!

All related news