Source: Politika (Translation provided by KoSSev)
Easter humiliation and downtrodding of Serbs and the Serbian Orthodox Church
In all these decades, what has had a shred of sincerity in the divided and separated national, religious, and ideological worlds in Kosovo and Metohija? Where could a simple human natural and much-needed message to address others be heard? Could someone’s desire to wish someone happiness, peace, prosperity – and even love be felt at least for a day?
„Happy Easter, Merry Christmas“ – various institutions, as well as individuals, said primarily to Orthodox Serbs during these decades in Kosovo. „Happy Easter“ messages had been repeated all these years to Catholic Albanians, Croats, and Janjevci. „Happy Ramadan, Eid – the start of fasting…“ – they reciprocated these rare and much-needed wishes, neighbourly thoughtfulness, traditional form, courteous phrases through the Kosovo walls…
However, this Easter, the most popular Kosovan politician and Prime Minister, Albin Kurti, decided to change all this and introduce a new way of congratulating, addressing, and communicating.
„With love for each other, for our homeland and our language,“ Kurti wrote, wishing a happy Easter to Orthodox believers. For the less knowledgeable, everything he said is within the limits of decency, when actually it is an open and the rudest provocation that an Albanian politician has used in the past few decades. Albin Kurti thus quoted Theophanes Fan Noli, the founder of the Albanian Orthodox Church and one of the founders of modern Pan-Albanian nationalism.
For Kurti, „our homeland“ and „our language“ are exclusively Albanian. He thus harshly and provocatively used the biggest Christian holiday to once again insult the citizens of Serbian ethnicity in Kosovo and Metohija, pointing out that there is room here for only one homeland (Greater) Albania and one language – Albanian. For him, the fact that, according to the Constitution, both Albanian and Serbian are equal in Kosovo and Metohija is irrelevant.
Instead of addressing the citizens of Serb ethnicity, he is actually congratulating Orthodox Christians, primarily those in Albania, thus remaining consistent with his idea of “Greater Albania,“ acting not as the Prime Minister of Kosovo but as a politician in the Republic of Albania.
The new generation of Albanian politicians in Kosovo, Albin Kurti and Vjosa Osmani, managed to show in a short time that they are fighting for either an ethnically pure Albanian Kosovo or for a „Greater Albania“, which Ramush Haradinaj is also calling for – with threats – on the eve of Easter. By the way, it was him who was left without a presidential seat thanks to Kurti.
Although deeply divided, Albanian leaders are united in their animosity toward everything that is perceived as Serb heritage, history, culture. They maintain the continuity of Albanian extremists who have destroyed and damaged 150 Orthodox churches and monasteries in the last 22 years of international peace, desecrated hundreds of cemeteries, and almost completely expelled the Serb population from urban areas.
Kurti’s „congratulations“ is nothing but a message to Serbia, the Serb people, and the Serbian Orthodox Church that there is no place for them in his country and that even though his Western mentors still claim that Kosovo was conceived as a multiethnic „state“, Kurti sees Kosovo as an Albanian country or, more precisely, a part of the united Albanian countries – which is something he has been working on for years.
How can Serbia and the SOC respond to this aggressive continuation of long-standing historical processes? One of the answers to this question includes a clear testimony and stance that the great and important Pristina-Belgrade dialogue can continue only by implementing, expanding, and respecting the agreements reached so far. Can Serbs in Kosovo recognize freedom in them? Can anything be achieved without resolving the issue of the obviously extremely endangered Serbian Orthodox Church in Kosovo and Metohija? Its holy sites, from the smallest churches and church localities to UNESCO monuments, have been under attack by Albanian extremists for too long. What inspired them to behave like that? For the most part, this is an ideology that Albin Kurti has cruelly preached, for the first time this year on Easter. His „congratulations“ did not leave us with the possibility of having our own name and language.
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