Publication: Monitor Volume: 2 Issue: 67

In an open letter released yesterday, Father Gleb Yakunin cautioned Russia’s Duma against interfering in the affairs of Estonia’s recently reestablished Orthodox church, which is independent of the Russian church. Yakunin urged the Duma not to politicize an ecclesiastical dispute under the pretext of defending ethnic Russians. He also emphasized that the legitimate owner of the substantial church properties is the Estonian church, not the Moscow Patriarchy, which appeared there only in 1944. (BNS, April 4)

A Soviet-era prisoner of conscience, Yakunin was excommunicated in the post-Soviet era by Patriarch Aleksy II for having pointed out certain prelates’ collaboration with the KGB. Aleksy has himself been so accused; the allegations date back to his period as archbishop of Tallinn.

Latvian-Estonian Maritime Border Dispute Flares Up.