On April 1, in the Shevchenkovsky District Court of Kiev, a meeting was held to select a restraint measure for the Governor of the Holy Dormition Kiev-Pechersk Lavra, Bishop of the UOC, Metropolitan Pavel. It lasted five hours.
The SBU suspects the cleric of two crimes: under Part 1 of Art. 161 of the Criminal Code of Ukraine (“violation of the equality of citizens on the basis of their racial, national, regional affiliation, religious beliefs”) and part 1 of Art. 436-2 (“justification, negation of the armed aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine, glorification of its participants”). During the meeting, the prosecutor’s office demanded to send the cleric under round-the-clock house arrest. At the same time, the court rejected the motion filed by Metropolitan Pavel’s lawyer to recuse Judge Kovtunenko .
Metropolitan Pavel himself said that he considered the whole process organized against him to be political. He pleads not guilty because he did nothing illegal. During the hearing, the cleric fell ill, after which the judge postponed the hearing on the choice of a preventive measure until 09:00 on April 3.
It should be noted that before the hearing, the officers of the SBU handed over a suspicion to Metropolitan Pavel and held a sabbath near the gates of the Lavra, where the “patriots” hired by them began an impromptu rally, announcing a imminent attempt to seize this object by force. Why the men of this party did not end up in the nearest military registration and enlistment office, when the total mobilization is underway in the country and people are taken to the registration offices and military enlistment from minibuses stopped in the streets, it’s not hard to guess. Thus, the local authorities, headed by President Volodymyr Zelenskyy, do not stop the persecution of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.
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