Russia has involved priests sent to occupied territories in intelligence work
Russia continues to persecute religious groups in Ukraine's temporarily occupied regions. They've dispatched Russian Orthodox Church priests to these areas to influence communities and gather information on parishioners
This information comes from the Center of National Resistance.
“The enemy is coercing religious communities of the UOC-MP into the Russian Orthodox Church. Priests who refuse to cooperate are being replaced by Russian Orthodox Church representatives,” the message says.
Russian Orthodox Church members are also assuming roles in other occupied church communities, such as those belonging to the Orthodox Church of Ukraine.
“Mariupol is receiving particular attention,” as highlighted by the Center.
These priests are actively involved in agent activities within the occupied territories. They collect information on patriotic parishioners and clergy and pass this data to Russian special services.
Last autumn, Russian media reported that the Russian Orthodox Church was preparing its priests to serve in Ukraine's occupied regions.