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PM Marković at PMQs: DF's claim that Government is trying to "uniatize" Montenegrins is nonsense that could only occur to those who would convert Montenegrins into Serbs

PM Marković at PMQs: DF
Published date: 22.07.2020 14:30 | Author: PR Service

Ispis Print

Prime Minister of Montenegro Duško Marković said today in the Parliament during the Prime Minister's Questions that the claim of the MP Club of the Democratic Front that the Government is allegedly working on "uniatization of Montenegrins" is nonsense and that it could only occur to those whose main idea is converting Montenegrins into Serbs.

"I must admit that I had to read your question several times, to make sure that you really ask me whether this Government is working intensively on the uniatization of Montenegrins, i.e. that it wants to change the identity of the Orthodox population in today's Montenegro. In trying to substantiate this claim of yours, I was completely baffled. What you have stated in support of your thesis is really without any foundation in the facts. I understand that we are already in the election campaign and that this is the time when politicians know to "forget" the facts, but this time you have exaggerated… Almost three quarters of the population of Montenegro are, as we know, Orthodox. To claim that this Government is working intensively on their conversion to Catholicism is absolute nonsense, which could only occur to those whose main idea is converting Montenegrins into Serbs. When that conversion fails, then one constructs the existence of some invisible force that drags us into the abyss, which is this time named uniatization," said the Prime Minister at the Prime Minister's Questions, answering a question from Budimir Aleksić from the MP Club of the Democratic Front.

The Prime Minister said that the Government does not convert, nor will it ever convert anyone into either religion or nationality, and that every citizen of Montenegro declares his religious and national identity freely and according to his own feelings.

"There is no determination of the Government of Montenegro to eliminate the Serbian Orthodox Church from this country, and the adoption of the Law on Freedom of Religion can testify to that. Nor is the Law directed against the Serbial Orthodox Church, as you say, nor towards the confiscation of its property, nor towards the change of its status. We, as the Government, commented on that the day before yesterday and yesterday, offering complete protection of the property of the Serbian Orthodox Church, through urgent amendments to the Law, which was also rejected! I am sure that all this is very well known to you, just like the fact that the Serbian Orthodox Church, as an institution under that name, has existed in Montenegro for about a hundred years, and not eight hundred, as you say. The State of Montenegro has the obligation to properly regulate the issue of freedom of religion, as well as all other issues that arise in this regard, in accordance with the highest standards of European democracies. With great patience and tolerance, we tried to clarify the doubts with the leaders of the Serbian Orthodox Church in Montenegro about the new law," said the Prime Minister.

Prime Minister Duško Marković referred to his recent commentary in daily "Pobjeda" that complete ignorance, or evil intent, is behind the attempt to compare the figure of Saint Sava, who had his mission in the 13th century, and the 'Saint-Savaism' that emerged as a political ideology in the 1930s of the last century.

"The 'Saint-Savaism' only borrowed the name from the Serbian saint, and it was founded in the then Kingdom of Yugoslavia, as you know, by the Serbian bishop Nikolaj Velimirović and the Serbian pro-fascist politician Dimitrije Ljotić, on the eve of the Second World War."

The Prime Minister rejected the claims that the Government only helps Prince Nikola Petrović because he is a Catholic. The Prime Minister said that only in independent and democratic Montenegro could the great injustice done to the Petrović Njegoš Dynasty at the end of the First World War be corrected. 

For full press release in Montenegrin please click here.