Photo from UNIAN

Head of the SBU Security Service of Ukraine Vasyl Hrytsak has said plans to destabilize the situation in Ukraine on religious grounds were drafted in the occupied territories and coordinated with Russia's FSB in Rostov region.

"We've been recently documenting how the 'religious card' will be played out... after Russia lost the 'battle for tomos' and the Orthodox Church was created in Ukraine. To destabilize the situation in Ukraine on religious grounds, our 'friends' resort to committing unlawful acts against the temples of the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of the [former] Moscow Patriarchate (UOC-MP)," he said at a coordination meeting of the heads of state law enforcement agencies to ensure law and order during the electoral process, as well as the state of counteraction against crime, an UNIAN correspondent reports.

Read alsoThree persons caught trying to set Zaporizhia church on fire

He added that today, the SBU has no reason to believe that representatives of that church are involved.

"Rather the opposite: we have information that the task is to intimidate representatives of [former] UOC-MP ahead of any extremists and unlawful acts against the temples, to make sure their reaction looks more authentic," Hrytsak said.

He said the relevant illegal actions had been documented in eastern Ukraine, and today the SBU will publish this information.

Read alsoRussian intel offering Ukrainians US$2,000 for setting on fire churches of former Moscow Patriarchate

"The attacks on the temples of the [former] Moscow Patriarchate have been organized from the territory of the occupied Donbas. But we have confirmed evidence that plans to destabilize Ukraine, or to play a religious factor, to destabilize the situation on religious grounds were coordinated with Russia's FSB in Rostov office," Hrytsak added.