Voices from Russia

Friday, 23 January 2015

State and Church Share “Close Views” on Kosovo

00 Nikolic and Irinej. Serbia. 23.01.15


On Thursday, Serbian President Tomislav Nikolić met with Serbian Patriarch Irinej Gavrilović “to discuss his proposal for a final settlement for Kosovo”. Nikolić, who often meets with the SPC head, said that his recently announced platform “would go towards what Serbia can accept as a final solution, without threatening its sovereignty and territorial integrity”. After a meeting that lasted almost two hours, President Nikolić told reporters that he and the Holy Synod have “very close views” about the issue, saying, “We talked about Kosovo and Metohija, the fate of our nation, our territory, the SPC, security in Kosovo and Metohija, and about how I see a solution”.

He noted that these are still “only discussions and consultations” and that there’s no “formal document” to present to the President of the Government, and, then, to the public. Nikolić said, “I presented some of my thoughts and I didn’t meet disapproval or disagreement from the Holy Synod. So, we’re very close in our thinking about what it should look like in the end”. Asked when the public would see the document, he said that he’d work “closely and intensively” to agree on this with President of the Government Aleksandar Vučić, “because such a document requires general agreement, or at least consent from the assembly, for what the government would propose on behalf of the President. It isn’t something that we should argue about, it’s a document in which we must find solutions that the government would support, as the body that needs to implement it and that’s negotiating in Brussels”. He called for patience, saying that we must wait for the meeting between Belgrade and Priština in Brussels, scheduled for 9 February, “to attempt to continue where (the dialogue) came to a halt a while ago. It seems to me that in that time we’ve all had time to think about what’s happening and what awaits us, and I think that we understand that procrastination and wasting time isn’t working in favour of Serbia”.

Nikolić said the other topics covered today included problems in the functioning of the Church, its relationship with state authorities, and the issue of restitution, saying, “The church has concerns about developments in Kosovo and Metohija, and I think it’s proper for His Holiness and the Synod to want to be informed about what’s being done, how far we’ve come”. Nikolić added that, as a member of the SPC, he’s anxious to know the views of the Synod, whilst exchanging thoughts with the Patriarch “helps make many things clearer. Now, I think that the need to meet more often is very manifest, at a time when we might face great temptations in solving major Serbian issues”.

22 January 2015




Saturday, 11 October 2014

Serbia Won’t Join EU Sanctions Against Russia

00 Vitaly Podvitsky. Sanctions. No Way! 2014


On Friday, Serbian Ambassador to the RF Slovenko Terzić announced that Serbia wouldn’t impose sanctions against Russia, despite EU pressure to do so. The so-called G-7 and the EU imposed sanctions on Russia, laying the blame for the present Ukrainian crisis upon it. Since 2012, Serbia has been an official candidate for EU membership. Terzić said in an on-air interview, “Because of the historic ties between our countries and our relations today we don’t want to join the sanctions against Russia. This is our clear position”. Terzić acknowledged that Serbia is under EU pressure to impose sanctions, saying, “Recently, the EU Commissioner (Regional Policy) Johannes Hahn hinted that they might once again discuss the issue of accession of Serbia to the EU”. Terzić said that some in Serbia want to join the EU, but not at the expense of its relations with Russia. Earlier reports stated that President V V Putin would visit Serbia on 16 October, where he’ll discuss key issues of bilateral cooperation with President Tomislav Nikolić and Prime Minister Aleksandar Vučić, especially concerning trade and economic affairs. In addition, Putin will take part in the celebrations in Belgrade to mark the 70th anniversary of its liberation from Nazi occupation.

10 October 2014



Thursday, 9 January 2014

Serbian President Tomislav Nikolić sez “We’ll Never Abandon Kosovo Serbs”

00 Tomislav Nikolić with Patriarch Irinej. 09.01.14


Serbian President Tomislav Nikolić delivered Christmas greetings to Patriarch Irinej Gavrilović and to all Orthodox Serbs on Monday, Orthodox Christmas Eve. In his Christmas message, the Serbian president’s press service said that President Nikolić wished a most joyous Orthodox holiday in peace and happiness to all Serbian citizens and to all Orthodox believers, saying, “Dear brothers and sisters, citizens of Serbia, Serbs in the diaspora, Christmas is a symbol of joy, unity, peace and gentleness. This is a holiday that brings together the family, sets up strong ties through the force of faith and love, and it brings together all Serbs”. The president wished a happy Christmas to Serbs in Kosovo and Metohija, going on to say, “Rest assured, we’ll never abandon you, we’ll never turn you over”. He added that this was an obligation and legacy from our ancestors, who gave their lives selflessly in the fight for this spiritual and ideological symbol of the Serb people.

Then, he pointed up, “It’s unimportant that those who spent their whole existence dedicated to materialism, who seek to satisfy their spiritual hunger by amassing wealth, mock our spiritual striving. What matters is that we, who have our essence, origins, and spirituality, persevere on the road of righteously maintaining our identity, origins, and culture”. Nikolić emphasised that this made us who we are… “a brave and just people, special, and noble”. Then, he said, “I wish a merry Christmas to Serbs in the region and Serbs in the diaspora, who know how hard it is to live outside the mother country, and how hard it is to earn your daily bread and prove that you aren’t second-class citizens. Our thoughts and love are with you”, adding that although physically far apart, Serbs would stand together in love and unity on this most joyous Orthodox holiday, saying in conclusion, “Dear brothers and sisters, the challenges ahead are great, but unity is something we should all strive to achieve. We should overcome personal vanities and animosities, and work together because we share the same goal”.

6 January 2014



Enhanced by Zemanta

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

Edict of Milan Anniversary Marked in Niš

00 Orthodox believers in Nish. Serbia. 09.10.13


Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew Archontonis served liturgy at the Church of Ss Constantine and Helena in Niš, in southern Serbia. The religious ceremony was the central part of the celebrations of 1,700 years since the Edict of Milan, held on Sunday. Also taking part in the liturgy were the Patriarchs of Moscow, Jerusalem, and Serbia and other Orthodox hierarchs. Patriarch Irinej Gavrilović of Serbia said in a sermon after the service, “Today, we’re celebrating a great historical event that changed the face of the world, an event that divided time into pagan and Christian eras”. In his remarks, Patriarch Bartholomew said that this great celebration represents the obligation of the Orthodox Church to re-examine itself, so that everyone could gain their individual resurrection. He pointed up the persecution of Christians before the release of the Edict of Milan, adding that the Edict is the source from which the principle of religious freedom arose and spread throughout the entire world.

Serbian President Tomislav Nikolić, Serbian Prime Minister Ivica Dačić, and other Serbian government officials, Republika Srpska (RS) President Milorad Dodik, and delegations from other Christian churches and religious communities attended the liturgy. A large number of believers were at the liturgy, and estimates by Niš police and the SPC said that there were over 15,000 people present at the affair. The celebration of the 1,700th anniversary of the Edict of Milan concluded with the award of the SPC Order of Emperor St Constantine the Great to prominent religious and political figures. The SPC gave the award to all the hierarchs present, beginning with Patriarch Bartholomew, and to secular and political personalities, including the Serbian president, Prime Minister Ivica Dačić, Montenegrin President Filip Vujanović (who wasn’t present), the RS President, and Serbian Crown Prince Aleksandar Karađorđević.

The Edict of Milan was a decree granting official toleration to Christians in the Roman Empire, issued together by Emperors Constantine the Great (who was born in present-day Niš in 272) and Licinius I.

7 October 2013



Editor’s Note:

No OCA delegation was present at the ceremony. Guess who didn’t come to dinner (Lyonyo et al were snubbed by Bart, and there’s absolutely nothing that they can do of it)…



Next Page »

Blog at WordPress.com.