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UOC-MP leadership must leave Kyiv Pechersk Lavra first - Tkachenko

The eviction of monks is not yet in question.

UOC-MP leadership must leave Kyiv Pechersk Lavra first - Tkachenko
Kyiv Pechersk Lavra

First of all, the leadership of the Holy Dormition Monastery and the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate) itself should leave the Kyiv Pechersk Lavra, Culture Minister Oleksandr Tkachenko has said on the air of the news telethon.

"No-one is raising the question of evicting the monks, we are talking about the return of property owned by the state, both movable and immovable. If anyone should leave, in my opinion, first of all, it is those leaders who have been carrying out illegal construction on the territory of the UNESCO site for many years – Metropolitans Pavlo and Antoniy, the Synodal Administration of the UOC (MP). And then we can talk about the rest," Tkachenko said.

The minister said that "monks always have a choice", referring to the transition to the Orthodox Church of Ukraine.

Regarding the statement of the Lavra's abbot, Metropolitan Pavlo, that the monks do not intend to move out, Tkachenko said: "I am sure that the situation will change radically when these citizens leave the territory of the Lavra. I think that the joint work of specialists and law enforcement officers will stimulate such a decision."

The minister also said that the process of creating a relevant commission of the Security Service of Ukraine and the Interior Ministry is currently underway.

On 10 March, the acting director-general of the Kyiv Pechersk Lavra National Reserve, Oleksandr Rudnyk, warned the UOC-MP monastery of the need to vacate the buildings and facilities of the National Reserve by 29 March. The reason for the eviction was the monastery's violation of the terms of the contract for the use of state property.

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