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The Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate has lost their leases in Ukraine

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As reported, the court refused to grant the claim of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Moscow Patriarchate) to the National Reserve "Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra", invalidating their deed which now disallows their continued free use of religious buildings and other state-owned property.

On March 30, 2023 in a Telegram message, Oleksandr Tkachenko, the Minister of Culture and Information Policy, announced that the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine has recognized the July 11, 2013 government order allowing the free use of the Holy Dormition Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church buildings and structures as invalid. 

"The government has just recognized as invalid the order of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine during the Yanukovych era dated July 11, 2013 No. 519 "Issue of the transfer of buildings and structures of the Holy Dormition Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra (men's monastery) of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church to free use." In addition to these legal decisions, the management of the property of the Lavra is passed to the state, because it is the state that owns these objects," Tkachenko emphasized.

However, the vicar of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra, Metropolitan Pavlo (UPC MP), stated that the monks are not going to move out of the Lavra.

The Secretary of National Security and Defense Council, Oleksiy Danilov, emphasized that the eviction will take place in accordance with the laws of Ukraine, and in the Lavra there will be religious services "according to the laws of our country, and not those artificial formations which, outside the laws of our country, were once formed here in huge numbers for those or other events."

Metropolitan Epiphanius of Kyiv and All Ukraine, in his address to the brothers of the Lavra and the public, emphasized that there is no question of closing the monastery in the Lavra and stopping prayers, services, and the monastic life centered in it.

On March 30, the commission of the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy was supposed to start an inventory of the property of the Kyiv-Pechersk Lavra. However, supporters of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (MP) obstructed the commission's activities.

On March 31, representatives of the Ministry of Culture and Information Policy informed that, during a second attempt by members of the commission to inspect the technical condition of the hospital with the Church of St. Agapitus (building No. 111), the building turned out to be closed and the keys, which had been handed over by representatives of the monastery, did not fit the building's lock. At the same time, when the members of the commission tried to approach the church, about 20 unknown persons in monastic robes blocked the passage to the building.

On Monday, April 2, the ICIP Commission will try to enter the Lavra for the third time.

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