Bishop of Raska-Prizren Teodosije was deeply appalled by the verdict of the Basic Court in Pristina against a former minister in the Kosovo government and current deputy, Ivan Todosijevic who was punished with two years of imprisonment for his verbal statement. It is „draconian,“ said the Bishop, stressing that the „verbal delict“ is bringing us back to “the darkest times of the communist dictatorship.”
“With all due respect for all war and post-war victims in Kosovo and Metohija, it is unacceptable for Serbs to be draconianly punished on one hand, while at the same time members the former KLA, who are suspected of numerous crimes against non-Albanians but also their own compatriots, not only remain untouchable, but are treated as heroes, despite the most severe expressions of ethnic and religious intolerance against the Serbian people. Not to mention blatantly racist statements against our people and harsh insults of Serbian religious feelings and dignity in certain Kosovo media. Double standards have no place in a legal society anywhere in the world including here. That is why our people see this verdict as one of the forms of pressure and intimidation,” the Bishop wrote in a statement.
“The treatment of Ivan Todosijevic’s statement as a verbal delict unfortunately brings us back to the darkest times of the communist dictatorship and opens the space for further ethnic discrimination,” he pointed out.
The Bishop expressed hope that this verdict will be quashed in the appeal process.
“Once again, on countless occasions, we appeal on everyone to refrain from inflammatory rhetoric and work to build peace and good neighborly cooperation for the benefit of all citizens,“ he concluded.
The former Kosovo Minister of Local Government Administration, Ivan Todosijevic was sentenced to 2 years in prison in the Basic Court in Pristina today for „inciting national, racial, religious hatred, restlessness or intolerance.”
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