Russian hackers attempted to steal emails of aides to Orthodox Church leader Bartholomew I

An AP investigation into Russian hackers known as Fancy Bear who were indicted in the U.S. reveals the group had been trying to break into the email accounts of top aides to Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I. Based in Istanbul, Patriarch Bartholomew is considered first among equals in the Eastern Orthodox world, and he is currently weighing Kiev’s bid to separate the Ukrainian church from the Russian church. Analysts say the hacking attempts show the pending decision on the status of the Ukrainian church is a high stakes matter for Moscow, and the Kremlin is scrambling to help the Moscow Patriarchate retain control of the Ukrainian church.


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