This statement was made by the director of the Department for Religious and Ethnic Affairs under the Ministry of Culture of Ukraine Andrei Yurash on November 21 at a press conference “Results and Challenges of the State-Confessional Policy in Ukraine” held at the “Ukrinform” agency on November 21. According to a UOJ correspondent, the main topic was the trial between the UOC and the Ministry of Culture regarding the re-registration of communities, as well as the situation with the rights of believers of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church in the country.
At a press conference, Andrei Yurash and people’s deputy Viktor Yelensky said that Ukraine has no problems in the religious sphere, and conflict situations arise solely through the fault of the UOC, which does not meet “positive steps of the Department for establishing cooperation and dialogue”.
The reason for the trial between the UOC and the Ministry of Culture was that of the 15 packages of documents submitted for the re-registration of statutes, only four were registered.
In recent years, the UOC has lost more than 40 churches during raider attacks by representatives of the Kyiv Patriarchate and the UGCC. Yurash and Yelensky call seizures “the peaceful expression of the citizens’ will” and deny the negative assessment of authorities’ interference in the religious sphere by international organizations.