07:02 GMT +322 July 2019
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    Patriarch Filaret, right, head of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church (Kiev Patriarchate)

    OSCE Following Events Around Ukrainian Orthodox Church, Aware of Risks - Chief

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    VIENNA (Sputnik) - Thomas Greminger, the secretary general of the Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), has told Sputnik that the organisation was closely monitoring developments concerning the Ukrainian Orthodox Church and was aware of potential risks arising from the situation.

    "We are very closely following what is happening, so we are also fully aware of potential risks. SMM [Special Monitoring Mission in Ukraine] is asked to monitor, if you follow the reports of SMM, you can see there are regular reports about it", Greminger said.

    Greminger told Sputnik that the OSCE had responded to a request by the Ukrainian Orthodox Church.

    READ MORE: Greek Patriarch: Granting Autocephaly to Ukrainian Church Will Not Lead to Peace

    Earlier in February, the Ukrainian Orthodox Church addressed the United Nations, the European Union and the OSCE, expressing concerns about the increased risk of escalation of religious conflict in Ukraine. The church subsequently said that it had not received a response from any of organisations.

    In the wake of the recent recognition of the independence of the newly established church in Ukraine, the canonical Ukrainian Orthodox Church has cited various cases of discrimination and aggression against its priests, congregation and properties on the part of the authorities, members of the new church, and nationalist groups.

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    mission, church, Ukrainian Orthodox Church (UOC), EU, OSCE, Ukraine
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