Sunday, April 23, 2006

Kosovo Albanian leader in Serb Easter visit

DECANI, Serbia and Montenegro, April 23 (Reuters) - Kosovo's ethnic Albanian president joined Serbs marking Orthodox Easter at a 14th century monastery on Sunday, a gesture unprecedented since the war and made amid talks on the fate of the province.

Facing international pressure to reach out to the 100,000 remaining Serbs, Fatmir Sejdiu made the 80-km (50-mile) trip west from the capital Pristina to the Decani monastery, nestled in a wooded valley at the foot of the towering Montenegrin border.

"I have come here because all citizens must be respected," Sejdiu, a Muslim, told reporters after a short lunch with the monks and a tour of the marble monastery and its immaculate grounds. He was accompanied by Kosovo's U.N. governor.

Orthodox Serbs mark Easter this year on April 23.

It was a sensitive step, seven years since NATO bombing drove out Serb forces and the United Nations took control.

Kosovo's 90 percent ethnic Albanian majority is pushing for independence from Serbia in negotiations under way in Vienna.

But they face pressure from the West to improve life for the Serb minority, ghettoised and targeted for revenge since the end of the 1998-99 war and the deployment of NATO peacekeepers.

Some 10,000 ethnic Albanian civilians died and 800,000 fled as Serb forces tried to crush a two-year Albanian rebel insurgency, the culmination of a decade of Serb repression.

Signs of reconciliation are rare. Mutual suspicion and sporadic, sometimes explosive, violence have kept the two communities firmly divided.

"The doors to the Decani monastery are always open to people of goodwill and who bring the message of peace," said the senior bishop at Decani, Bishop Teodosije.

REJECTION

A request by Kosovo Prime Minister Agim Ceku, a former guerrilla commander Serbia accuses of war crimes, to attend the Easter service in the Serb enclave of Gracanica was rejected by the head of the Orthodox church in Kosovo, Bishop Artemije.

Artemije insisted Ceku first rebuild some 30 Orthodox religious sites torched during Albanian mob riots in March 2004, in which 19 people died and 2,000 Serbs fled their homes.

Sejdiu, who succeeded the late Kosovo Albanian pacifist icon Ibrahim Rugova in February, insisted Kosovo's rich Orthodox heritage would be safe.

"We are demonstrating that we are ready to protect all religious monuments in Kosovo, and all cultures," he said.

A UNESCO world heritage site now guarded by Italian NATO soldiers, the monastery, its dark interior a mosaic of Byzantine frescoes, sits on the western edge of a province dominated by 2 million mainly Muslim ethnic Albanians.

Scores of centuries-old monasteries lie at the heart of Serbia's claim to Kosovo as its religious heartland stretching back 1,000 years.

But diplomats say Western powers will steer negotiations that began in February in Vienna toward some form of independence, possibly within the year. The talks, mediated by U.N. envoy Martti Ahtisaari, reconvene on May 4 in the Austrian capital.

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

BELGRADE -- Mladic has been located in Macedonia, near the Greek border, according to daily Glas Javnosti.

The daily writes that according to Banja Luka daily Fokus, Mladic was located in Macedonia two weeks ago, in a vacationing community on the coast of the Dojranska Lake, near the border with Greece. Fokus’ sources say that Serbian Prime Minister Vojislav Kostunica has serious intentions of arresting Mladic and extraditing him to The Hague, but is trying in every way possible to make sure that the arrest does not take place on the territory of Serbia.

Fokus claims that this is because Kostunica would like to keep the Government in tact, and the Socialist Party of Serbia is threatening to collapse it if Mladic is arrested.

Macedonian President Branko Crvenkovski denied the claims that Mladic is in Macedonia, according to Glas Javnosti.

Serbian Radical Party official Milorad Mrcic said that Mladic’s eventual arrest would show how little Kostunica takes into consideration the feelings of Serbia’s citizens and that arresting Mladic would be yet another betrayal of the Serbian people.

Liberal-Democratic Party President Cedomir Jovanovic that every day is a good day for Mladic to be arrested.

The International Crisis Group’s Balkans expert, James Lion, said that the media creates unnecessary hype before every deadline for the arrest of Mladic and that the international community will believe that Mladic is arrested only when they see him in The Hague. He said that Mladic will not be arrested because the Serbian Government is using the situation as a trump card for the Kosovo question.

Kosmet1 said...

There is no doubt in my mind that this church along with all the churches in Kosovo will be destroyed as soon as Kosovo got independence.

Anonymous said...

we'll see.

I doubt it. It's more likely that if the world doesn't stop Serbia all the Hungarians will be mass-killed.

WARchild said...

Albanians have an established tradition of protecting the same monasteries. Serb monasteries in Kosova have for a long time hired the services of Rugovian guards to protect their property. WWII is a wonderful example of that, documented with phtographs. Something must have happenned that after so many centuries of coexistence they find themselves targeted.

Ceku's TMK and Kosova Police Service have offered to place guards near shrines, but Serb church leaders rejected that offer. It was General Ceku who using his authority as former KLA commander called for the riots of March 2004 directed against some of these shrines to stop.

The only way for these monasteries to stay clear of being targeted is for them to not participate in politics. Any second they try to deal in politics over such explosive issues as the status of Kosova, they must also be willing to take the repercussions that ensue them. Muslim leaders are a great example of this in Kosova, and their Orthodox counterparts have a lot to learn from them.

Kristian said...

Well happy easter to all of the orthodox faith.

To: Kosmet1

Are you going to distroy everything that is Christian too???? Just curious!

As far as those churches go a lot of them were Albanian churches prior to them being Serbian. As ppl converted to Islam the churches were left alone and the only practitioners were serbian. The churches were not destroyed for centuries nor will they. They will remain as they have thus far.

Think of them as money magnets for future tourism. A lot of money to be maid with the right marketing. Businesses, hotels, jobs, and money etc...... Something to think about instead of just simply destroying them.

Peace to all....

Anonymous said...

To the mad dog that said that "all orthodox churches will be destroyed if Kosova becomes independent."...

Is this so is it??

Well then, can you tell me why we Albanians have never ever tried to destroy these old churches before? I'll tell you why. It's because we are the most religiously tolerent people of Europe if not the world. Also, all of these old churches are Albanian orthodox or catholic churches and that is why. Even when islam became a majority religion amongst Albanians, we never ever even thought about destroying these chuches. Infact to the contrary, we protected, repaired and maintained them. The only churches that were destroyed and that will possibly be destroyed (demolished) in the near future are the very lately built ones (the last 100 years or less) by the serb colonialist regimes in areas that were not legally purchased and did not have the legal right to be built where they stand, etc, etc. Like the one on the grounds of Prishtina University. I repeat again, the old Orthodox churches (notice I don't say serb Orthodox) churches will never be demolished. Because, as I stated above, they are an integral part of Albanain history. A lot of Northern Albania (by this I mean and includes Kosova, Western Macedonia, Southern Montenegro, Sandjak, etc, etc) was inhabited by Orthodox Christian Albanians before Islam was introduced.

Albanians could have destroyed these churches a thousand times over throughtout the centuries if we wanted. But the fact that Albanians are not religious fundamentalists or extremists, coupled with the fact that we know that these churches were built by our forefathers (ie: we all know that we were all Christian - either Catholic or Orthodox) has meant that they have been and will be preserved as a spiritual and historical legacy of Albanians in general, of all faiths/beliefs.

So, to all out there (serb, Albanian or other)...let's stop calling these churches serbian Orthodox churches, because simply put, they are NOT!

Bashkim Shqiptari

Anonymous said...

If Albanians can be nice to Serbs why do they have to be independent? This just goes to show Kosovo independence is stupid.

Kristian said...

Anonymous said...

If Albanians can be nice to Serbs why do they have to be independent? This just goes to show Kosovo independence is stupid.



YOU SOUND LIKE A WIFE WITH A HISTORY OF ABUSE! My husband beats me but its ok bc he loves me!

Its sounds dumb to you, but Albanians do not want to be prosecuted/demoralizd by you!

Anonymous said...

Prishtina, DTT-NET.COM) – Prime Minister of Kosovo said on Monday that 2001 deal between Macedonia and Serbia on Kosovo border is not valid for Ethnic Albanian authorities of UN administrated territory.

Anonymous said...

"If Albanians can be nice to Serbs why do they have to be independent? This just goes to show Kosovo independence is stupid."

It is because Serbs cannot be nce to Albanians that Kosova should be independent. And the fact that Albanians are good to Serbs is another reason why everyone should support this aim without reserve.

Anonymous said...

ALBANIANS SIDED WITH NAZI'S IN WW2. AND KILLED THOUSANDS OF SERBS AND DETROYED CHURCHES AND DO WE FORGET THE DOZENS OF CHURCHES DESTROYD AND CIVILIANS KILLED IN MARCH OF 2004!!! ALBANIANS CAN NEVER BE TRUSTED THE WILL NEXT CAUSE TROUBLE IN MACEDONIA AND MONTENEGRO GAURENTEED. THEY KILL SERBIAN AND GYPSY CIVILAINS IN THE NIGHT THEN CRY TO THE WEST WHEN PATYBACK COMES.

Ahmet said...

Excuse but do you have and facts how many albanians have been killed by serbians forces not only in this century. As it matters the issue of WWII we were on Nazi's side. In that case we played a kind of game (like chess game), Serbia had protection from Russia as it was since long time ago and we sided with nazis because serbs were comunist and Hitler fought them so if his forces attacked our enemies(serbians) why we should be not cooperating with them. In same time many Jews have been saved during WWII by albanians this fact is proved already.

Ahmet N Murati said...

Can you mention which churches were destroyed in Kosovo. What about the expelling of Albanians from Southern Serbia during the year 1875-7. Almost Albanians were inhabitants of 25% of Serbian territory. I think that this issue will be considered in neat future.

Anonymous said...

ARE YOU SICK PEOPLE THET FUCKED IT HAPPENED TWO YEARS AGO! YOU KISS ASSES TO THE U.S WILL EVENTULLY LOSE! HAVE THE BALLS TO DO IT YOUR SELVES PUSSIES! NOW KEEP CRYING TO THE U.S! CHICKEN SHITS!

Anonymous said...

ARE YOU SICK PEOPLE THET FUCKED IT HAPPENED TWO YEARS AGO! YOU KISS ASSES TO THE U.S WILL EVENTULLY LOSE! HAVE THE BALLS TO DO IT YOUR SELVES PUSSIES! NOW KEEP CRYING TO THE U.S! CHICKEN SHITS!

Learn english shithead.

dave said...

i think that guy needs a new keyboard. it looks like his CAPS LOCK is jammed.
;)

gujgli said...

"In that case we played a kind of game (like chess game), Serbia had protection from Russia as it was since long time ago and we sided with nazis because serbs were comunist and Hitler fought them so if his forces attacked our enemies(serbians) why we should be not cooperating with them.

Great, your nation share goals with Nazi's, you cooperate with Nazi's but you're not Nazi yourself? What is the word for that? Hmm, ahm, hm, oh yes, NAZI.

Second, Serbs were not comunists, we had prowestern oriented cetniks or monarchy army which resisted both the comunists and nazi's...

"In same time many Jews have been saved during WWII by albanians this fact is proved already."

Only Draza Mihajlovic, Serbian chetnik general was rewarded by Harry Truman 1948 with Legion of merit (i hope you know what it is) in former Yugoslavia, so that bs how you Nazi collaborators helped Jews sounds really ridicolous.

Anonymous said...

Bishop Nikolai, who is Saint to many Orthodox believing Serbs, wrote: "Europe is presently the main battlefield of the Jew and his father, the devil, against the heavenly Father and his only begotten Son . . . (Jews) first need to become legally equal with Christians in order to repress Christianity next, turn Christians into atheist, and step on their necks. All the modern European slogans have been made up by Jews - the crucifiers of Christ: democracy, strikes, socialism atheism, tolerance of all religions, pacifism, universal revolution, capitalism and communism... All this has been done with the intention to eliminate Christ . . . You should think about this, my Serbian brethren, and correspondingly correct your thoughts, desires and acts." (Bishop Nikolai Velimirovic in his book "Addresses to the Serbian people - Through the Prison Window").
You forgot a couple of things though. Nedic and his police killed thousands of jews. And also there is a concentration camp near belgarde which you serbs seem to conviniently forget. Search Sajmiste in case you didnt know.Here is some info:
http://www.whitepower.co.uk/serb.html

gujgli said...

"You forgot a couple of things though. Nedic and his police killed thousands of jews."

What Draza Mihajlovic got in common with Milan Nedic? Draza Mihajlovic was even court-martialed by Nedic.

"And also there is a concentration camp near belgarde which you serbs seem to conviniently forget. Search Sajmiste in case you didnt know."

Go to school again, you missed some history lessons.

Sajmiste was run by Gestapo not Serbs. Many Jews and Serbs were killed in Sajmiste, so don't post rubish.

"Here is some info:
http://www.whitepower.co.uk/serb.html"

Oh, anti-semitic? That explains a lot. Unfortunately for you, Serbs were always in excelent relations with Jews, so people like you can spread that propaganda somewhere else.

Anonymous said...

Bishop Nikolai, who is Saint to many Orthodox believing Serbs, wrote: "Europe is presently the main battlefield of the Jew and his father, the devil, against the heavenly Father and his only begotten Son . . . (Jews) first need to become legally equal with Christians in order to repress Christianity next, turn Christians into atheist, and step on their necks. All the modern European slogans have been made up by Jews - the crucifiers of Christ: democracy, strikes, socialism atheism, tolerance of all religions, pacifism, universal revolution, capitalism and communism... All this has been done with the intention to eliminate Christ . . . You should think about this, my Serbian brethren, and correspondingly correct your thoughts, desires and acts." (Bishop Nikolai Velimirovic in his book "Addresses to the Serbian people - Through the Prison Window").

Anonymous said...

Serbia's Secret War (Eastern European Studies , No 2) (Paperback)
by Philip J. Cohen, David Riesman

This book was not written by me. Read about your filthy propaganda.