Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations appealed to a number of institutions with the urge to assist in releasing the captured Ukrainians, political prisoners and other hostages, which are held in Russia and in the occupied Ukrainian territories of Crimea and Donbas.
The letters signed by Rabbi Yaakov Dov Bleich, the Chairman of the UCCRO, are sent both to the leadership of the Russian Federation and to the World Council of Churches, as well as the Interfaith Council of Russia and other interdenominational institutions, the Institute for Religious Freedom reports.
“The Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations urges You to do everything possible so that the process of releasing political prisoners, captives and hostages from Ukraine is unblocked, so that they are released soon”, the appeals note.
The Ukrainian Council of Churches draws attention to the fact that it is about the people who, according to numerous testimonies and conclusions of international organizations, are in very difficult confinement conditions, are subjected to torture and have no access to medical care. Each day of their imprisonment causes serious harm to their health and causes deep grief to their relatives and loved ones.
“The fate of a group of Ukrainian citizens convicted for political reasons who are now in Russian prisons raises a red flag. The very fact of their condemnation indicates a violation of the rule of law principle for political reasons”, the UCCRO emphasized.
The Ukrainian Council of Churches and Religious Organizations states that it shares the position of many international organizations, including non-governmental ones, regarding the need for quick release of the captured Ukrainians, other Kremlin’s hostages, which are held in Russia and in the occupied territories of Ukraine. The religious leaders also made an appeal, prior to their release, to provide them with decent confinement conditions in accordance with the norms of international humanitarian law and respect for human life and dignity.
As IRF previously reported, the Council of Churches had suggested that all the believers and all local religious communities pray for the release of Ukrainian sailors and other Kremlin’s captives during their worships.