Ukraine exchanged Russian ROC agents in POW swaps, official says

7 April, 01:25 AM
Oleksii Danilov (Photo:Anna Voitenko/Reuters)

Oleksii Danilov (Photo:Anna Voitenko/Reuters)

The Russian Orthodox Church (ROC) in Ukraine had numerous Russian intelligence assets embedded within, some of whom have since been exchanged for Ukrainian soldiers in POW swaps, Ukraine’s National Security and Defense Council (NSDC) secretary Oleksiy Danilov told Ukrainian news agency Ukrinform on April 6.

“In this institution (ROC) there were a lot of representatives of the so-called intelligence community of the Russian Federation,” Danilov said.

“Some of them we have already exchanged for our prisoners.”

According to the official, the Ukrainian government is not at odds with Orthodox Christianity, but with ROC – a religious organization without proper registration under Ukrainian law.

Video of day

“Do you want to go to pray – go and pray,” the secretary explains.

“But institutions that are not properly registered on the territory of Ukraine cannot work here...”

The State Service for Ethnic Policy and Freedom of Conscience concluded on Feb. 1 that ROC remains a under Moscow’s administrative control, despite the church council's declaration of "full autonomy and independence."

In 2022, Ukraine’s SBU security service began inspecting ROC religious buildings throughout Ukraine, discovering anti-Ukrainian literature and symbols in many churches.

We’re bringing the voice of Ukraine to the world. Support us with a one-time donation, or become a Patron!

Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Google News

Ukraine Today
Fresh daily newsletter covering the top headlines and developments in Ukraine
Daily at 9am EST
Show more news