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Daily press briefing of the Serb National Council of Kosovo and Metohija

Gracanica, October 6, 2000

  • Congratulations of the Diocese of Raska and Prizren
  • Message to Free Serbia from the SNC
  • Bishop Artemije plants a tree of freedom and democracy in Gracanica
  • MESSAGE OF THE DIOCESE OF RASKA AND PRIZREN TO THE NEWLY ELECTED PRESIDENT OF FRY

    Gracanica, October 6, 2000

    Respected Mr. Kostunica,

    In the name of my Diocese, my clergy, monkery and the faithful people of Kosovo, Metohija and Raska, it is with joy that I congratulate you and the entire Serbian people on the victory of freedom and democracy. In these moments of joy, in our prayers we are with all of you as we have been in previous years in our common battle for the freedom of our country, our people and the victory of justice and truth over lies and tyranny of the Godless regime.

    EPISCOPE ARTEMIJE AND THE CLERGY AND MONKERY OF THE DIOCESE OF RASKA AND PRIZREN

    STATEMENT OF THE SERB NATIONAL COUNCIL OF KOSOVO AND METOHIJA

    Gracanica, October 6, 2000

    It is with great enthusiasm that the Serb National Council congratulates the freedom of the citizens of Belgrade and the freedom-loving people of Serbia and sincerely welcomes the victory of democracy and the will of the people over the tyranny of a undemocratic regime. The elected president of FRY, Dr. Vojislav Kostunica, together with representatives of the United Opposition of Serbia, demonstrated during the course of the day yesterday the high degree of conscientiousness and dignity of a democratic and national leader who led the people to freedom and the realization of the electoral will of the citizens of our country with courage and wisdom. The people of Belgrade and Serbia have shown decisiveness and amazing courage in taking freedom and the future in its own hands from those who for years kept them in shame and humiliation.

    Even though all of us are faced with the difficult task of creating a stable, democratic and hospitable country, we are thankful to God that a firm conviction has taken root among the citizens of Serbia that there is no man or political ideology capable of leading the Serbian people into fratricidal conflict. Nevertheless, we cannot help but feel pain and sorrow for yesterday's victims who sacrificed their youth and their health for the future of their country.

    The SNC especially welcomes the support shown for the united opposition by many members of the police who joined the people and thus demonstrated that their job is to serve the people, not to serve as tools of the regime against their own people and their children. The Council calls on representatives of the Yugoslav Army to recognize the electoral will of their people as soon as possible and to express their support for their newly elected president, Dr. Vojislav Kostunica.

    The SNC especially congratulates the residents of Belgrade on the constitution of a new city government, and we wish our dear friend and courageous fighter for democracy and freedom, Milan St. Protic, much success as the new mayor of the capitol. We also greet the liberated media: Radio Television Serbia, Politika, Tanjug, which served for years as tools of the darkest propaganda, poisoning the souls of millions of people with lies and hate. We are joyful that the media will again be messengers of objective truth, free of every form of political and individual manipulation. With admiration we congratulate the numerous independent reporters and media who together with the people waged a battle with words of truth and love of freedom.

    It is with great hope that our Council and the freedom-loving Serb people in Kosovo and Metohija look at their own future because after decades of aimless wandering, manipulation, humiliation and suffering, we are finally getting our true representatives who will, by their moral integrity and patriotism, seek by political means to protect the integrity of our country and the human rights of all of its citizens, especially of the suffering Serb people in Kosovo and Metohija. We are joyful that the time is coming when Albanian extremists responsible for the post-war persecution of our people and holy sites will no longer be able to hide behind the regime of Slobodan Milosevic and the leaders of the Albanian community in our southern province will finally be forced to accept political dialog with the legitimate and recognized democratic representatives of the country in which they live.

    As far as former president and dictator Slobodan Milosevic and his shameful clique are concerned, who humiliated the people of Serbia and exposed them to ridicule of the entire world for many years, we are certain that their names will remain forever on the trash heap of history. If it should perchance occur that they escape the sentence of their own people and the international community, we are certain that they will not escape God's sentence.

    Before us is a difficult task. Protecting the dignity of a people and country thrown to the margins of contemporary Europe, we must find a way to find the road to the 21st century and modern democratic society. History and our past must be our teacher and a source of experience but by no means an obstacle on the road to the future.

    LONG LIVE FREE SERBIA AND FREE BELGRADE HAPPY FREEDOM TO YOU, PEOPLE OF SERBIA

    The Episcope of Raska and Prizren ARTEMIJE and the Serb National Council of Kosovo and Metohija

    BISHOP ARTEMIJE PLANTS A TREE OF FREEDOM AND DEMOCRACY IN GRACANICA

    At a ceremony held today in Gracanica as part of the project to protect the environment of Gracanica, renewal of the electricity and communal services infrastructure, Episcope Artemije planted a symbolic tree of peace and democracy in front of the cultural center in Gracanica in the same of the Serb people of this region together with the representative of the European Commission for Reconstruction and Development, Mr. Hugh Fingerelli. After planting the tree, Episcope Artemije delivered an inspirational litany before the people present and officials, stating that today was a day of historic significance for liberated Serbia and calling the planted tree the tree of democracy in a free Serbia. Just as it is necessary to nurture a tree and to water it regularly, so the acquired freedom and democracy in our country must be nurtured and developed through the great effort of all citizens. Episcope Artemije expressed special thanks to the European Commission for Reconstruction and Development for assistance to the Serb community of Gracanica. This project has enabled the employment of several hundred residents of Gracanica and is the result of the joint effort and cooperation of the European Union and the SNC.

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