Russian political scientist: Russia won't wage war on Ukraine over church issue, it waits for regime change

5 February 2019, 10:20 | Religion and policy | 0 |   | Code for Blog |  | 

The Kremlin counts on the change of power in Ukraine after the election, therefore, the statement by Russian President Vladimir Putin that “Russia reserves the right to respond to the encroachment on the freedom of religion of the inhabitants of Ukraine” is unlikely to lead to military escalation over the coming months. This opinion was expressed in a comment to the publication Gordon by Russian political scientist Andriy Piontkovsky.

“Putin did not say anything new. The Russian empire has always aimed at destroying Ukraine, depriving the Ukrainian nation of its identity, and has constantly voiced these theses about the “fraternal people” and “one people”. It is not clear just how they ever combine these two theses. If there were new threats, Putin is unlikely to surprise Ukrainians, and the UOC-Moscow Patriarchate is a wonderful basis for the Russian Federation, its agents in Ukraine, their leaders are all Russian agents, so why be surprised? Much depends on the persistence of the Ukrainian authorities and the population of the country. And Moscow priests will try very hard to harm Ukraine,” said Piontkovsky.

According to him, Moscow will make attempts to influence the result of voting in Ukraine.

“Talking about Putin's threats through the Church in Ukraine, I think that direct military aggression is impossible in the coming months. Nevertheless, they are business-minded people, therefore they consider less costly methods, for example, the Kremlin hopes to change something in Ukraine after the elections. They want to put in the presidential armchair and in the parliament some people who will go for capitulation, so Moscow will not only wait, but also will actively participate in the Ukrainian elections,” said Piontkovsky.

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