|HRH CROWN PRINCE ALEXANDER’S MESSAGE TO THE DEMONSTRATORS
AGAINST NATO AGGRESSION ON YUGOSLAVIA
My greetings to all the Serbs and friends of the Serbs !
NATO aggression on Yugoslavia has now been going on for over a week, but the Serbs do not surrender. The mightiest military power in the world has attacked a small country in the Balkans in an attempt to impose its will on it by force. But the Serbs are not people who fear force but people who have always resisted the aggressor in the defence of their freedom and their state. The Serbs have always been the strongest when fighting “for the Holy Cross and golden freedom”.
NATO political leaders affirm that that the purpose of air strikes on Yugoslavia is to avert a humanitarian catastrophe on Kosovo. But it is clear to everyone that NATO aggression has only aggravated the humanitarian situation in Kosovo and created the danger of war spreading to other Balkan countries. When in 1995 Krajina and Western Bosnia were ethnically cleansed of the Serbs, when Serbs in those areas were forced to leave their centuries-old homes, the West did not even lift a little finger to prevent that catastrophe. It did not even condemn that barbaric action.
The Serbs were loyal allies of the Western democracies in two world wars but are now being mercilessly bombed by the same allies. Since the bombing is not going terribly well, more and more voices are now being raised in favour of an attack by ground forces which would occupy a part of Yugoslav territory - Kosovo. Our erstwhile allies have thought it fit to be involved in the aggression against the Serbs our former common enemy - Germany. In three days, it will the 6th of April, the day when the German Luftwaffe carried out a bestial raid on Belgrade killing thousands of innocent Belgraders, and now the Germans are again taking part in the destruction of Serbia. It is really true that history repeats itself !
We are on the eve of Easter, the holiest Christian festival. And it was precisely on Orthodox Easter back in 1944 that our allies unnecessarily bombed Belgrade causing enormous human casualties among a population that had already suffered terribly under German occupation. We only hope that the bombing on Orthodox Easter will not be repeated this year again.
The fact that NATO has now launched an attack on Yugoslavia`s sovereignty and territorial integrity without any authorisation by the UN Security Council is a violation of international law, and must be roundly condemned. In such a situation the Serbian people have no alternative but to defend themselves.
The Western world is celebrating Easter tomorrow and we, Orthodox , celebrate it a week later. I call on NATO leaders to halt all military operations against Yugoslavia and to help in the search for a solution through negotiations. The bombing of Serbia and Montenegro must stop. The destruction of Yugoslavia`s economic infrastructure and the demonisation of the Serb people must cease. There has been enough war and bloodshed throughout Europe and in the Balkans. I have no doubt that the Serbian people want a peaceful solution and that all Yugoslav citizens can live in peace and friendship.
Today, on Lazarus Saturday, I pray to the Lord to save the Serbian people from this terrible predicament and from the danger to which they are exposed and also to grant us a rebirth of Serbia as a modern democratic country which will ensure a better future for us and for our children.
Long live Serbia ! Long live Montenegro !
London 3 April 1999