Constitutional Court declares law to rename UOC-MP constitutional

Constitutional Court declares law to rename UOC-MP constitutional

Ukrinform
Ukraine's Constitutional Court has recognized as constitutional the law "On Freedom of Conscience and Religious Organizations," which provides for the renaming of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP).

A respective decision was made on Tuesday, December 27, on the basis of a constitutional motion filed by 49 MPs, the court's press service told Ukrinform.

"The Constitutional Court issued a ruling in the case regarding the full name of religious organizations and concluded that the changes to Article 12 of the Law 'On Freedom of Conscience and Religious Organizations' are constitutional," the report reads.

According to the report, the law obliged religious associations to reflect their affiliation with a religious organization outside of Ukraine, to which it is a member, by mandatorily reproducing the full statutory name of such a religious organization in its name.

Also, the law established restrictions on the access in wartime of clerics, religious preachers, and mentors of religious organizations, the management center of which is located outside Ukraine in a state recognized by law as having carried out military aggression against Ukraine and temporarily occupying part of its territory of Ukraine to the units of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and other military formations of Ukraine in the places of their deployment or other military formations of Ukraine in the places of their deployment or other restrictions provided by the law.

The judges-rapporteurs in this case were Serhii Holovatyi and Oleksandr Petryshyn.

The full text of the ruling is to be made public on Wednesday, December 28.

On December 20, 2018, the Verkhovna Rada adopted Law No. 5309, which, in particular, stipulates that a religious organization whose center is located in an aggressor country must indicate the full statutory name of its religious center in its name. The law obliges the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the Moscow Patriarchate to indicate its affiliation to the Russian Orthodox Church in its name.

On January 18, 2019, Ukraine's Constitutional Court received a motion from 49 people's deputies regarding the constitutionality of the aforementioned law.

On February 11, 2020, the Constitutional Court began consideration of the case regarding the constitutionality of the law on renaming religious organizations.

On April 22, 2019, Kyiv's District Administrative Court granted the lawsuit to cancel an order by the Ministry of Culture obliging the Metropolitanate of Kyiv of the UOC-MP and a number of religious organizations to make changes to their official names.

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