Russia convenes UN Security Council on 'persecution of Orthodoxy' in Ukraine. All details

Anastasia KovalevaWorld
Russia convenes UN Security Council over 'persecution of Orthodoxy' in Ukraine

A meeting of the United Nations Security Council is taking place in New York. It was convened by the Russian Federation in connection with the alleged "persecution of Orthodoxy" in Ukraine.

A broadcast of the meeting appeared online. The representative of Russia offered the participants of the meeting to listen to three reports (to watch the video, scroll to the end of the news).

The first report will be presented by the UN, a representative of the Alliance of Civilizations. The second report will be presented by Archbishop Gedeon (Yuriy Kharon) from the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate). The third report will be given by the writer Jan (Yakov) Taksyur, who was found guilty of treason and convicted.

Russia sought to allow Archbishop Gedeon to speak online at the United Nations Security Council meeting in New York,. However, the British presidency in July decided to allow only two of the three speakers proposed by Russia. The Russian representative demanded that the matter be put to a vote as a procedural matter. "Three of the 15 members of the UN Security Council voted in favor, but 12 members abstained. As a result, Archbishop Gedeon's report was not heard.

Dmitry Polyansky, Russia's deputy post-presidential envoy, accused the event of solidarity with the Kyiv regime's repressive policy against canonical Orthodoxy.

What the representative of the UN Alliance of Civilizations said

According to the representative of the Alliance of Civilizations, the internal split between Ukrainian Orthodox churches has been ongoing for many decades. Recently, however, this split has become an even more acute problem, attracting the attention of the entire world community. The Orthodox churches found themselves facing a difficult choice of who to support and on which side to take a position.

The Alliance office also noted that according to an updated report by the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner, a significant increase in violence against members and supporters of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (UOC) has been recorded between February 1 and April 30, 2023.

"The authorities, in particular, searched cult buildings and other UOC facilities, declared suspicion against clerics and sent several of them under house arrest, including one of the main hierarchs of the UOC on the basis of little or no evidence," she said.

The UN representative also noted the possible early termination of the lease agreement between the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra and the UOC and expressed concern about the potentially discriminatory nature of the cumulative impact of the Government's measures against the UOC.

It also noted that actions by the Russian Federation Armed Forces against religious communities had been documented in territories under occupation by the Russian Federation. These actions included enforced disappearances, arbitrary detentions, cases of torture and other ill-treatment, as well as illegal deportations of clergy and members of Ukrainian Greek Catholic Christians. This has raised serious fears and concerns among the international community, which is paying attention to the situation of religious rights in the occupied territories of Ukraine.

"Moreover, Russian occupation authorities looted and closed down three places of worship belonging to the Baptist community in Melitopol, reportedly on the basis of their links to foreign intelligence services with little evidence," a spokeswoman for the UN Alliance of Civilizations said.

What U.S. representative said

U.S. spokeswoman Linda Thomas-Greenfield said the United States takes allegations of human rights violations seriously, including freedom of religion or belief. She emphasized that the U.S. expects all governments to respect and honor human rights and fundamental freedoms. This demonstrates the importance the U.S. places on protecting human rights both domestically and in international relations.

"Yet in this meeting we see Russia cynically complaining about the mistreatment of the UOC while it engages in systematic religious oppression in the occupied territories. Russia continues to mistreat members of religious minorities in Ukraine, which it occupied during the illegal war. Russia is calling for this meeting after its destruction of the historic Transfiguration Cathedral, which belongs to the UOC itself," she said.

The diplomat said she finds it appalling that the Russian government presents itself as a defender while the battering Russia inflicting on religious sites and places of worship in Ukraine is well documented. This statement reflects its condemnation of actions involving violations of human rights and religious freedom and emphasizes the importance of being transparent and objective in documenting and condemning such events.

"The Ukrainian Institute for Religious Freedom has reported that 494 sites in Ukraine have been destroyed, damaged or looted in Russia.  This is an unconscionable war," Thomas-Greenfield said.

What Japan's representative said

The Japanese diplomat expressed his condemnation of the missile strike on Odesa, which damaged the Cathedral of the Transfiguration of the Savior.

"Russia is trying to use narratives to present itself as a bodyguard of religious freedom. But when it comes to attacks on religious sites, Russia has done enormous damage to Ukraine. We strongly condemn the recent Russian rocket attacks on Odesa, which caused civilian casualties and damaged the protected UNESCO cathedral," he said.

The Japanese representative said Russia should withdraw all troops and military equipment from Ukraine and respect Ukraine's independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognized borders.

As reported by OBOZREVATEL, the aggressor country Russia called a meeting of the UN Security Council to discuss the supply of Western arms to our state to defend against attacks by the occupiers. However, Moscow was put in place again, reminding that it receives weapons from other countries and uses them to attack a sovereign country and its people.

Only verified information we have in our Telegram channel Obozrevatel and Viber. Do not fall for fakes!

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