29 Sep 2018 16:20

Constantinople's attempts to justify its entitlement to Ukraine have no legal basis - Russian Orthodox Church

MOSCOW. Sept 29 (Interfax) - Attempts of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Constantinople to justify its entitlement to modern Ukrainian Church using documents from 300 years ago have neither legal, nor historical basis, the Moscow Patriarchate said.

"First of all, the historical document on the handover of the Kyiv Metropolitanate to the Moscow Patriarchate in 1686 does not have any mentions that this handover was temporary. But if we imagine - although, I repeat, it's not in the document, - that the temporary nature of the handover had been mentioned there, it still would not have any legal effect today," Vladimir Legoyda, head of the Russian Orthodox Church's Synodal Department for Church-Society and Media Relations, told Interfax.

The general principle of Roman law is that the period of limitation is 30 years applies to Christian law as well, he said.

"Thirty, not three hundred!" Legoyda said.

If one does not take that into consideration and tries to proceed from ancient concepts of church borders, "it is as if a state used 300-year-old documents while determining its modern borders," he said.

Therefore, references to a tomos issued by Ecumenical Patriarch Dionysius of Constantinople to Moscow in 1686 "cannot be viewed as some 'killer argument' today," Legoyda said.