Russia Cancels Another Catholic Priest's Visa

Father Stanislav Krajnak Is Parish Priest in Yaroslavl

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MOSCOW, AUG. 16, 2002 (Zenit.org).- Russia has revoked the visa of yet another foreign-born Catholic cleric.

The action early this month came in the wake of the revocation of visas for Catholic Bishop Jerzy Mazur and Italian Father Stefano Caprio.

The latest case involves Father Stanislav Krajnak, a Slovak, who has worked for the past two years in the town of Yaroslavl, 280 kilometers (175 miles) northeast of Moscow, according to the England-based Keston Institute (www.keston.org).

Still serving in his parish, Father Krajnak will have to leave Russia by the end of August, when his current visa expires.

The secretary of the Russian Catholic Bishops’ Conference, Father Igor Kovalevsky, told Keston News Service that the Foreign Ministry, as in previous cases, has given no explanation for the visa denial.

The Holy See’s mission in Russia is making diplomatic efforts to have the denial overturned, officials said.

Father Kovalevsky said that earlier this year Father Krajnak was refused a visa to Kazakhstan. Father Krajnak wanted to travel home to Slovakia by train through Belarus after his visa expires, but was refused a Belorussian transit visa.

“This leads us to think that Father Stanislav is on the notorious blacklist of Catholic priests that they are trying to drive out of Russia,” said Father Kovalevsky.

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