Home Page
news 06 Dec 12

Serbian Church Accuses Govt of 'Suicide' on Kosovo

Scenting a softening of Serbia's claim to the former province, the Serbian Orthodox Christian Church has accused the government of being an accomplice to international plans to 'cut its jugular and take out Serbia's heart'.

Bojana Barlovac BIRN Belgrade

In a strongly worded letter, the Holy Synod of the Serbian Orthodox Church has demanded that Serbia's authorities stop taking part it what it called "the country's suicide" over Kosovo.

"It is perfectly clear to every reasonable man that the Western powers, after the NATO bombing war [in 1999] are step-by-step creating the state of Kosovo for Kosovo Albanians while getting Serbia to act as their accomplice... cutting her jugular and taking its heart from its bosom, her holy land of Kosovo and Metohija," the letter said.

The letter was sent on Thursday to the Serbian President, Tomislav Nikolic, the Prime Minister, Ivica Dacic, the First Deputy Prime Minister, Aleksandar Vucic, and to opposition leaders.

It remains unclear who sent the letter on behalf of the Church as, after it was released on Thursday, some bishops denied that anyone in the Church had sent it while other bishops confirmed it.

The letter further criticizes the government's Kosovo policy and the deals that Belgrade has reached with Pristina during EU-mediated talks, which started in March 2011, three years after Kosovo declared independence.

“We expect the government and parliament to reconsider all agreements of the previous government about [border] ‘crossings’ that have not been approved by parliament instead of accepting the [EU-brokered] 'integrated border management’ agreement,” the document says.

The letter comes a day after Dacic and his Kosovo counterpart, Hashim Thaci, agreed that implementation of an earlier border agreement will start on December 10 on two border crossings.

Under the terms of the IBM agreement, Kosovo and Serbian customs and police officers will stand under one roof once the agreement is put into operation.

The Church said the government should also seek guarantees from the international community for the return of thousands of expelled citizens from Kosovo, and restoration to them of their homes and churches, and should pass a law on restitution of the state and church property in Kosovo before any other talks take place.

According to the document, the state should also demand removal of the US military base, Camp Bondsteel, from Kosovo, and stop "the cowboy-style illegal occupation of Serbian lands and mineral resources in Kosovo".

The document also calls for investigations before international courts into allegations that top Kosovo officials were part of an organised crime network that trafficked in organs.

President Nikolic met with Patriarch Irinej, head of the Church, three times since he became president in May. The purpose of the visits was to seek the Church's support for government policy on Kosovo.

Talk about it!

blog comments powered by Disqus

Serbia - Kosovo Relations: Latest Headlines

rising-balkan-risks-demand-action-home-and-abroad-12-14-2017 Comment 14 Dec 17 Rising Balkan Risks Demand Action Home and Abroad

Heightened tensions and potential violence have been predicted for the Balkans in 2018, so people in the region must find the courage to seek solutions themselves, with help from Washington and Brussels.

kosovo-is-wasting-its-energy-on-recognition-battles-11-27-2017 Comment 05 Dec 17 Kosovo is Wasting its Energy on Recognition Battles

Getting diplomatic recognition by small, far-off states is far less important than having a functioning economy.

the-kosovo-serbia-dialogue-is-just-lose-lose--11-13-2017 Comment 13 Nov 17 The Kosovo-Serbia Dialogue is Just ‘Lose-Lose’

Both countries, and both peoples, stand to lose out in the long term from a ‘dialogue’ that has never advanced beyond leaders shaking hands and photo opportunities in Brussels.

serbia-s-flour-export-ignites-trade-war-with-kosovo-11-03-2017 News 03 Nov 17 Serbia Warns Kosovo Over Extra Tax on Flour

Serbia said it would introduce unspecified 'counter-measures', after Kosovo said it was sticking by its decision to raise the tax on imported Serbian flour.

serbian-monarchists-british-right-wingers-plot-kosovo-resistance--11-02-2017 Investigation 03 Nov 17 Serbian Monarchists, British Right-Wingers Plot Kosovo ‘Resistance’

Russian-linked Serbian monarchists and a British far-right organisation have been seeking to equip mystery groups in north Kosovo in order to resist what they believe will be an attack on Serbs by Kosovo Albanians.

kosovo-and-catalonia-have-little-in-common-11-02-2017 Comment 02 Nov 17 Kosovo and Catalonia Have Little in Common

Catalonia’s recent declaration of independence has prompted many to draw comparisons with events in Kosovo – but closer analysis shows the two cases are very different.

kosovo-serbs-show-theirs-fears-on-establishing-the-army-11-01-2017 news 01 Nov 17 Thaci Vows to Ease Serb Fears About Kosovo Army

Kosovo President Hashim Thaci joined a discussion on the potential creation of a regular army in Kosovo, saying Serbian fears about such a development needed addressing.

suriname-triggers-new-phase-in-kosovo-recognition-battle-11-01-2017 Comment 01 Nov 17 Suriname Triggers New Phase in Kosovo Recognition Battle

The apparent decision of a Latin American state to revoke its recognition of Kosovo shows the diplomatic struggle over Serbia’s former province is far from over.

serbian-authorities-want-wide-public-debate-on-kosovo-10-30-2017 News 30 Oct 17 Serbia Promises Broader Public Debate on Kosovo

As the Serbian government’s working group tasked to coordinate ‘internal dialogue’ on Kosovo held its first meeting, its head, Marko Djuric, said it aimed to encourage a wider public debate on this still very sensitive issue.

local-elections-reveal-different-strife-in-north-kosovo-10-18-2017 feature 19 Oct 17 Local Elections Reveal Different Strife in North Kosovo

As local elections in Kosovo draw nearer, the tensions in the Serb-dominated north are very different from the ones that haunted this region in the past.