UWC calls upon Verkhovna Rada to prevent the privatization of Ukraine’s priceless cultural treasures
March 5, 2012
UWC CALLS UPON VERKHOVNA RADA TO PREVENT THE PRIVATIZATION OF UKRAINE’S PRICELESS CULTURAL TREASURES
The Ukrainian World Congress (UWC) calls upon Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada to prevent the privatization of priceless cultural treasures such as Kyiv-Pechers’ka Lavra, Pochayivs’ka Lavra and Svyato-Bohoyavlens’kyi Monastery. Pursuant to the draft law “On amendments to certain laws of Ukraine”, these Christian churches have been slated for deletion from the list of cultural treasures of Ukraine currently protected from privatization.
The draft law also stipulates that the Cabinet of Ministers “will be making decisions about the transfer of title of national cultural heritage sites to, or their cost-free use by, religious organizations.” Since the Kyiv-Pechers’ka Lavra, Pochayivs’ka Lavra and Svyato-Bohoyavlens’kyi Monastery are currently being used by the Ukrainian Orthodox Church Moscow Patriarchate, the proposed changes would enable the official transfer of these invaluable cultural treasures of Ukraine to the Moscow Patriarchate and allow for their privatization.
“The Ukrainian World Congress deems totally unacceptable the privatization of Ukraine’s invaluable national places of worship which, by law, should remain the property of the state and, by right, belong only to Ukraine and the Ukrainian people,” stated UWC President Eugene Czolij.
The UWC is an international coordinating body for Ukrainian communities in the diaspora representing the interests of over 20 million Ukrainians. The UWC has member organizations in 32 countries and ties with Ukrainians in 14 additional countries. Founded in 1967 as a non-profit corporation, the UWC was recognized in 2003 as a non‑governmental organization (NGO) by the United Nations Economic and Social Council with special consultative status.