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Poll: Two-thirds of Ukrainians support banning Russian-controlled church

by Olesya Boyko June 15, 2023 1:51 PM 2 min read
Metropolitan Onufriy (C) arrives for the Sunday service of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP) at a compound of the Kyiv Pechersk Lavra on March 26, 2023, in Kyiv, Ukraine. (Photo by Roman Pilipey/Getty Images)
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A recent poll by the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology showed that 85% of respondents believe that the state must intervene in the affairs of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP).

According to the survey, 66% of Ukrainians support completely banning the Russian-controlled church in Ukraine.

The number of those supporting both the state interference and the ban has grown since December 2022, according to the Kyiv International Institute of Sociology.

Meanwhile, 19% of respondents are in favor of a somewhat softer approach, which does not imply a complete ban, but involves state control and supervision over the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate.

The survey’s results didn't significantly vary depending on the region. It was conducted on May 26-June 5 in all Ukrainian regions but those currently under Russian occupation.

The UOC-MP has faced backlash due to its long-standing ties to Russia, as well as Russian passports, anti-Ukrainian propaganda, and stolen icons during nationwide raids on its religious sites.

Metropolitan Pavlo (Petro Lebid), the UOC-MP's abbot of the Pechersk Lavra Monastery, was charged on April 1 with "inciting inter-religious hatred and justifying Russia's armed aggression" and put under house arrest.

9 months into the war, Moscow-backed churches in Ukraine get in trouble
Ukraine has two main orthodox churches, and the one run by Moscow is having a hard time. Starting from Nov. 22, Ukraine’s law enforcement has raided several premises of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP). The latest search occurred on Nov. 28 in western Ukraine. Ukr…

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