18 January 2019

Yesterday, resorting to the most flagrant violations of the Law of Ukraine "On the Rules of Procedure of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine" and to the mass “button punching”, the Verkhovna Rada voted on the so-called “anti-church” law no. 4128-d, discriminating and infringing the rights of the majority of confessions and religious organizations of Ukraine and, above all, of the only canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church headed by His Beatitude Onufriy, Metropolitan of Kyiv and All Ukraine.

This bill was written at the dictation of the Presidential Administration and the only reason for its appearance is to please the presidential election campaign, under pressure from law enforcement authorities and local authorities to ensure a massive transition of parishes from the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church to an artificially created Orthodox Church of Ukraine.

Together with colleagues from the Opposition Bloc faction, we have registered a decree overturning the results of voting for this draft law, and we demand from the chair to have a revote on it in accordance with the legal procedures. We have also prepared a corresponding motion to the Constitutional Court on violation of the Constitution during the voting on draft law no. 4128-d and draft law no. 5309 about a forcible renaming of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church. 

I want to assure everyone – our political force, the Opposition Bloc – makes use of all lawful opportunities to protect the rights and freedoms of millions of believers in Ukraine.

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