Ukraine accuses Russia of plotting violence against Moscow church


Ukrainska Pravda, 18 February 2019


The security service states that intelligence services of the Russian Federation are preparing attacks on 20 church buildings of the Moscow patriarchate on Ukrainian territory. This was stated at a briefing on 18 February by the chairman of the S.B.U., Vasily Gritsak.


"Actions are being prepared throughout Ukraine. We received a plan that has been coordinated with Russian agents in Rostov oblast. This plan has been activated and a large number of—actually 20—buildings have been listed there, which it is planned to attack in Ukraine," he explained.


Gritsak said that for carrying out the arsons and attacks upon church buildings, local residents are being sought with the promise they will be paid money. He published a list of the buildings on which attacks are to be made, with the rates in Russian rubles.


According to the head of the S.B.U., a former agent of the S.B.U., Egor Sobolev, participated in organizing the attacks on the church buildings.


Gritsak also described how the S.B.U. identified and detained the perpetrator of the arson of the church in Zaporozhe and also identified the sponsor of the attack. "The sponsor is Artem Timchenko, who in 2014 left for occupied territory where he hid from law enforcement agencies and cooperated closely with the so-called Ministry of State Security of the so-called Donetsk People's Republic," Gritsak explained. He also showed short recordings of conversations between Timchenko and another instigator of crimes, Andrei Kuzmenko. (tr. by PDS, posted 19 February 2019)

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