KFOR Commander gen. Skiaker visited Decani Monastery,
Aug 30 2001
"I see the Monastery as a symbol of humanity
and of resistance against violence."
by Squadron Leader Roy Brown
# 08-38 PRISTINA, Kosovo - Thursday 30 Aug 2001
COMKFOR Makes Second visit to Decane
Today, 30 August, COMKFOR LTG Skiaker visited Visoki Decani Monastery
for the second time. COMKFOR had an extended meeting with Abbot Father
Teodosije and Father Sava who informed him about the situation of the
monastery. COMKFOR also received a briefing by the Commander of Task
Force Sauro, Colonel Corcione. The Italian Task Force provides security
for the monastery as part of its mission. Recently, it has initiated
infrastructure projects benefiting both the monastery and the local
Following his visit, COMKFOR made the following statement:
"Visoki Decani is one of the outstanding cultural monuments of
Kosovo. It is an important religious site for the Serbs, but it is also
part of heritage of Kosovo and should be treasured by all.
During the fighting in 1999, the monks of Visoki Decani saved Kosovo-Albanians
from persecution by Serb forces. I see the monastery as a symbol of
humanity and of resistance against violence.
I am pleased that a dialogue between the monastery and the local leaders
in Decani has recently begun and that this has been supported by KFOR's
I appeal to all political and religious leaders in Kosovo to strengthen
the dialogues between communities and to distance themselves from the
politics of hatred. The international community expects that the leaders
of all groups in Kosovo take responsibility and that they will be an
example to their followers.
It is my hope that Visoki Decani can become a place of reconciliation
that will send a signal throughout Kosovo.
KFOR will continue to provide security at Visoki Decani as long as this
is necessary. Any attacks or threats will meet a robust response. But
I hope that the day will come when monasteries in Kosovo no longer require
protection by soldiers."