Patriarch Filaret heads the Kyiv Patriarchate, the branch of Ukrainian Orthodoxy that is loyal to President Petro Poroshenko’s administration. He recently sat down with EurasiaNet.org to discuss religious affairs in Ukraine and how the ongoing conflict between Kyiv and Moscow is extending into the spiritual sphere.
Russian President Vladimir Putin is trying to use religion to advance an expansionist agenda. But an increasing number of believers in Ukraine appear to be rejecting the notion that Putin and the Russian Orthodox Church are the defenders of the true faith.
The year-long unrest and conflict in Ukraine that first escalated and then subsided had repercussions from Turkey in the west to Kyrgyzstan in the east, with governments attempting to stifle their own dissent at home or dealing in uncertainty with Putin's Russia. Even as the value of the ruble tumbled, Russia continued to flex its political muscles in the region, secu
Turkey has professed itself the steadfast defender of the Crimean Tatars’ minority rights, but, so far, that mission has not interfered with its interest in trade with Russia, its largest export-import partner.
Almost a century ago, amid the civil warfare that erupted following the collapse of the tsarist empire, a Ukrainian army led by Nestor Makhno marched under the banner, “anarchy is the mother of order.” These days, as a conflict simmers in eastern Ukraine, some Ukrainian entrepreneurs are embracing a far different motto: military necessity is the mother of market invention.
Ukrainians head to the polls on October 26 to vote for a new parliament. How the voting goes in the strife-torn east could go a long way toward determining whether the elections infuse enough political will into the system that Ukraine can start fulfilling the promise of the Maidan movement.