Putin describes establishment of new church in Ukraine as 'dangerous politicking'
MOSCOW. Jan 16 (Interfax) - The establishment of the Orthodox Church of Ukraine is a purely political project aimed at sowing not only ethnic but also religious discord between Russians and Ukrainians, Russian President Vladimir Putin said.
"The new church entity is an entirely political, secular project. Its main aim is to divide the peoples of Russia and Ukraine, sowing seeds of ethnic as well as religious discord," Putin said in an interview with the Serbian newspapers Politika and Vecernje Novosti ahead of his visit to Serbia.
The English-language version of the interview is available on the Kremlin's official website.
The establishment of the new religious entity in Ukraine is nothing but an attempt "to legalize the schismatic communities that exist in Ukraine under the jurisdiction of Istanbul, which is a major violation of Orthodox canons. Yet, hardly anyone in the U.S. or in the Ukrainian leadership worries about this," Putin said.
"Once again, this has nothing to do with spiritual life; we are dealing here with dangerous and irresponsible politicking," he said.