Russian occupiers burn church library in Mariupol

The library contained several unique copies of Ukrainian-language editions
The library contained several unique copies of Ukrainian-language editions

Read also: Defense Ministry says capture of two Luhansk Oblast settlements by invaders due to Ukraine’s ‘mobile defense'

“Following a visit by Moscow’s FSB agents in clerical robes, the entire library of Mariupol’s Petro Mohyla Church was confiscated and burnt in the courtyard,” said Andriushchenko.

Read also: Russia accused of spreading fake news to lure evacuated residents back to Mariupol

According to Andriushchenko, the library was built-up with the efforts of local volunteers and philanthropists, and contained several unique Ukrainian books, which are now lost forever.

Andriushchenko added that Russians are planning either to demolish the church altogether, or convert it to a Russian Orthodox temple.

Read also: Russian armor column demolished in Donetsk oblast

Russia has repeatedly said that it is working towards the destruction of Ukrainian culture, and have targeted Ukrainian cultural institutions. In occupied settlements, the occupiers have burnt books and converted schools from Ukrainian language instruction to Russian.

Read also: Russian forces achieve partial success in Lysychansk area, but efforts to seize Donetsk Oblast still unsuccessful

The deliberate cultural erasure of a people is a signifying factor in genocide, according to the United Nations.

Help NV continue its work reporting on the Russian invasion