Myroslav Marynovych
Мирослав Маринович
Marynovych in 2013
Born (1949-01-04) 4 January 1949 (age 75)
Komarovychi, Ukrainian SSR, Soviet Union (now Ukraine)
Alma materLviv Polytechnic Institute
Occupation(s)vice-rector of the Ukrainian Catholic University, lecturer, social activist
Known forhuman rights activism with participation in the Ukrainian Helsinki Group
MovementSoviet dissidents
AwardsOrder For Courage 1st class Knight's Cross of the Order of Merit of the Poland Member of the Order of Liberty Member of the Order of Liberty
Vasyl Stus Prize, Truman-Reagan Medal of Freedom

Myroslav Frankovych Marynovych (Ukrainian: Миросла́в Фра́нкович Марино́вич; born 4 January 1949) is a Ukrainian educator, human rights activist, and former Soviet dissident currently serving as vice-rector of the Ukrainian Catholic University in Lviv. The co-founder of Amnesty International Ukraine, Marynovych was a founding member of the Ukrainian Helsinki Group.

Early life

Marynovych was born on 4 January 1949, in the village of Komarovychi of Staryi Sambir Raion of Drohobych Oblast (now Lviv Oblast). His grandfather was a priest of the Ukrainian Greek Catholic Church and his family was very religious.[1] In Drohobych he attended high school, from which he graduated with a gold medal. Then he worked as a secretary at the plant in Drohobych for a year.

In 1967, Myroslav Marynovych began studying at the Lviv Polytechnic Institute. At the Institute, he spoke out against the Soviet government.[1] As a result of this, his first meeting with the KGB took place in 1970.


In 1972 he graduated from Lviv Polytechnic and worked as a translator for English at the Ivano-Frankivsk plant "Positron". At the same time he met with dissidents from Lviv and Kyiv. On 22 May 1973, he was arrested and searched by police in Kyiv when he laid flowers at the monument to Taras Shevchenko.[2]

Afterwards he was conscripted into the Soviet Army, where he served from 1973 to 1974 in Vologda.[3]

After his release from the army, Marynovych moved to Kyiv in 1974. He worked as a technical editor for the magazine pochatkova shkola (Elementary school) and at publishing house Tekhnika, where he was fired by KGB order. He was unemployed for some time. Before the arrest, he arranged to stick posters.[2]

Prison time

In 1976, Marynovych met Mykola Matusevych, and became a founding member of the Ukrainian Helsinki Group. Since then he was repeatedly detained by police in Kyiv and Serpukhov. Searches were conducted in Drohobych, and he was constantly threatened. Eventually, because of their membership, Marynovych and Matusevych were arrested on 23 April 1977, on the charge of "Anti-Soviet agitation and propaganda".[3] At the trial and sentencing he denied any guilt. After 11 months he was finally convicted and sentenced to the maximum term - seven years of severe security camps and five years in exile.[1]

Marynovych was in the camp Perm VS-389/36-2 in Perm Oblast.[4][5] There he took part in all human rights actions, held hunger strikes, including a 20-day protest, and narrated a camp chronicle.[6] For the whole term he had about 150 days of solitary confinement in a ShIZO cell (ШИЗО, from Штрафной ИЗОлятор/Shtrafioi Izolyator). In 1978, Amnesty International identified Marynovych as a prisoner of conscience. After completing his seven years imprisonment in April 1984, Marynovych was exiled to the village of Saralzhin in the Oiyl District of Aktobe region of Kazakhstan, where he worked as a carpenter. He married Lyuba Kheina, who travelled from Kyiv to join him in exile.[7]

Later activities

In 1987, he returned to western Ukraine, and worked in an oil refinery in Drohobych. He also worked as a reporter in the local newspaper, Halytska Zorya (The Star of Halych; Ukrainian: Галицька Зоря).[8]

Also in 1991 Marynovych founded the first Amnesty International group in the USSR and served as its head till 1996.[7][9] From 1993 to 1997 he served as chairperson of the National Committee.[10]

From 1997 to 2007 he served as Director of the Institute of Religion and Society of Lviv Theological Academy (later UCU), and was member of the Ukrainian Theological Scientific Society.[10][11]

From 2000 to 2005 he served as Vice-Rector of the Ukrainian Catholic University for External Affairs.[10][12]

Since 2007 he is the President of the Institute of Religion and Society, UCU.[10]

In 2010 he became the president of the Ukrainian Centre of PEN International and serves till now as honorary president.[13][7]


Marynovych's first published work came out in 1990, titled The Gospel According to God's Fool.[14] This work had been written while he was serving in exile, and was later translated into German and French.

In 1991, his second work was published, entitled Ukraine on the Margins of the Holy Scripture (Ukrainian: Україна на полі Святого Письма).

In 1993 - "The Atonement of Communism", "Ukraine: Road through the Desert".



Among his awards, Myroslav Marynovych received a prize from the journal Suchasnist (“Modernity”) for his political science report “Atoning for Communism” (1993), the Valerii Marchenko award from the Ukrainian-American Bureau for Protection of Human Rights for the best human rights publication (1995), the Vladimir Zhabotinsky Medal for the promotion of inter-ethnic understanding from the Ukraine-Israel Society (1999),[14] the Sergio Vieira de Mello Humanitarian Award (2013),[15] and the Truman-Reagan Medal of Freedom (2014).[16]

Marynovych has received many educational awards, including fellowships at Columbia University (USA), the World Council of Churches (Switzerland), and the Catholic University of Nijmegen (The Netherlands).[14]

State awards



  1. ^ a b c "МАРИНОВИЧ Мирослав". Retrieved 6 June 2019.
  2. ^ a b "Value Imperatives of Development: The Ukrainian Experience, A talk by Myroslav Marynovych". Retrieved 27 November 2019.
  3. ^ a b "MARYNOVYCH, Myroslav Frankovych - Ukrainian National Movement". Дисидентський рух в Україні (in Ukrainian). Retrieved 25 September 2019.
  4. ^ "Implementation of The Helsinki Accords p.46" (PDF).
  5. ^ "The Ukrainian Review I 1987 p.84" (PDF).
  6. ^ "Our warmest wishes to Myroslav Marynovych!". Human Rights in Ukraine. Retrieved 27 November 2019.
  7. ^ a b c "Marynovych Myroslav". PEN Ukraine. Retrieved 27 November 2019.
  8. ^ "The Ukrainian Weekly No.27 p.7" (PDF).
  9. ^ "Amnesty International Report 1994 p.16" (PDF).
  10. ^ a b c d "Myroslav Marynovych". UCU. Retrieved 25 September 2019.
  11. ^ "Religious Liberty and Its Role in Building Democracy: The Case of Ukraine – NATIONAL ENDOWMENT FOR DEMOCRACY". Retrieved 27 November 2019.
  12. ^ "Important Precedent from the Rector of the Ukrainian Catholic University". Human Rights in Ukraine. Retrieved 27 November 2019.
  13. ^ "Myroslav Marynovych | HuffPost". Retrieved 27 November 2019.
  14. ^ a b c "myroslav-marynovych". УКУ (in Ukrainian). Archived from the original on 18 September 2012. Retrieved 6 June 2019.
  15. ^ "Prize of Sergio de Mello Awarded to Myroslav Marynovych | Ukrainian Catholic University". Retrieved 25 September 2015.
  16. ^ "Ukrainian champions of liberty receive 2014 Truman-Reagan Medals of Freedom". Retrieved 25 September 2015.