Regarding the disturbing news that His Holiness Patriarch of Serbia and the Bishops were banned today from entering Kosovo, HRH Crown Prince Alexander of Serbia issues the following statement, condemning most strongly these harmful actions of so-called Pristina institutions:

“With great disturbance, I have received the news that due to the decision of Kurti’s government, His Holiness and the Bishops of our Church could not enter Kosovo, to start the annual Holy Assembly of Bishops of the Serbian Orthodox Church in the centuries old home of our Patriarchs, the Patriarchy of Peć. I most strongly condemn these irresponsible and harmful actions of the institutions of the so-called “State of Kosovo”! Patriarch Porfirije was always the strongest advocate of true Christian values, and the biggest promoter of peace, understanding, and joint life of Serbs and Albanians. Such a shameful ban serves no one’s honour.

Something like this to happen is unthinkable and unacceptable, and I am deeply worried and concerned. Freedom of religion must be honoured, but it is obvious that this is just one more of the basic human rights that are being taken away from the Serbs in Kosovo! I am also appealing to all those who have an influence on Kurti to do what they can to stop this discrimination and violation.

The position of the Crown is firm and unwavering: Kosovo and Metohija are an inseparable, historical and fateful part of Serbia, the cradle and home of its people, Church and culture! Without interfering in the politics of those who shape the destiny of the world, no action can be taken that would cost our people their survival and right to live in their own country, on their own property and on their own soil. The Patriarchy of Peć is the rightful home and throne of our Patriarch for centuries and he must not be banned from going there and bringing comfort and hope to our people!“