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March 17, 2023

Archbishop Pimen on Securitate pay-roll under codename Sidorovici

The Supreme Court (ICCJ) has irrevocably ruled that Pimen, the Archbishop of Suceava and Radauti, collaborated with the former Securitate, thus rejecting his appeal against the ruling made by the Bucharest Court of Appeals. The Bucharest Court of Appeals decided on March 16 that the Archbishop’s appeal against the CNSAS decision according to which he collaborated with the former Securitate was groundless. The Bucharest Court of Appeals ruling was attacked at the High Court. The latter irrevocably rejected the appeal, upholding the ruling made by the Bucharest Court of Appeals. According to CNSAS Decision number 3,370, adopted on October 9, 2007, Vasile Zainea (Pimen Zainea) “was used as an informant under the code-name Sidorovici, from 1975 to 1977.” The aforementioned document shows that “during the time he spent in Putna he was sometimes used in order to collect information on foreigners that were visiting or staying at the monastery,” and that the data he obtained was then reported verbally. “After he came to Suceava he was drawn into collaborating more and the information he obtained was delivered in writing, although he is not registered as a source,” the SIE 40160 file reads. The CNSAS decision also points out that after returning from training in the Federal Republic of Germany on June 30, 1977, Vasile Zainea was registered as an internal informant, in order to prepare him “for external tasks, under the codename Petru.” “Prior to him being registered as an internal informant, the documents confirm that the foreign intelligence service took control of him prior to him leaving for Federal Republic of Germany at the end of 1976,” the CNSAS decision shows, pointing out that the DIE informant file was opened on November 20, 1976. The proposal to abandon the informant was made on January 22, 1979, because he failed to fulfill the mission with which he was sent to Jerusalem, Israel, returning to the country earlier because of his failure to adapt to the region’s climate. Following an approval issued by the deputy of the internal affairs minister, the proposal to abandon the informant and to classify the materials since they are no longer of interest was adopted. “In the absence of the written commitment, the correlation between the informant’s real name and code-names, Sidorovici and Petru, is made through elements of identification pointed out by officers in notes and reports – the date and place of his birth, his parents’ names, his professional training and workplace,” the CNSAS decision adds.The Romanian Orthodox Church who fervently opposed CNSAS to look into the Securitate past of its high priests did not react to the ruling.

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