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Greek Catholic Church's Priests Warned About Protests

Nearly one tenth of Ukraine's population belongs to the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church. (file photo)
Ukraine's Culture Ministry has warned the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church that it could face lawsuits if its priests continuing participating in pro-European Union protests.

In a letter issued on January 13, the ministry called the religious activities of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic priests on Kyiv’s Independence Square in support of antigovernment protesters since December "a violation of Ukrainian legislation regarding the freedom of conscience and religious meetings," which could lead to "the cancellation of the church's activities" and criminal charges.

Svyatoslav Shevchuk, head of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church, said in Kyiv on January 13 that his church cannot stay away when its parishioners seek help since "people's rights and the principles of public morale come out of God's law."

An estimated 4.2 million of Ukraine's 45.5 million people belong to the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church.

With reporting by