Quint once again call for the return of the land to Visoki Decani monastery

Foto: KoSSev

The Quint countries once again called on Kosovo institutions today to implement the decision of the Kosovo Constitutional Court and return the land to the Visoki Decani monastery.

“The Heads of Mission of France, Germany, Italy, the United Kingdom, and the United States remain concerned that despite repeated urging from the international community and its own judiciary, Kosovan institutions have still not fully implemented the lawful registration of the Decani Monastery’s land, in line with the 2016 Constitutional Court decision,” the US embassy wrote in a joint statement.

The non-implementation of this court decision and others undermines the government’s commitment to enforcing the rule of law and its respect for an independent judiciary, the Quint countries underlined.

“Implementing these decisions are fundamental democratic responsibilities necessary for Kosovo’s democratic consolidation and future Euro-Atlantic integration. Once again, we encourage the Government of Kosovo to put political disagreements aside, embrace its democratic responsibilities, and fully implement all Court decisions.”

In the last five years, Quint countries and other international representatives and organizations have frequently called on Kosovo institutions to implement the decision of its Constitutional Court and return 24 hectares of land to the monastery.

Kosovan institutions, however, have repeatedly refused to do so.

The Diocese of Raska-Prizren has also reiterated on several occasions that this decision is „final and irrevocable“, and that its non-implementation „only further demonstrates the legal threat to the monastery.“

This year, the monastery of Visoki Decani, which has been under the protection of UNESCO since the middle of the 2000s, was included on Europa Nostra’s list of the seven most endangered European cultural monuments, partly because of the non-implementation of this court decision.

The very decision to include the monastery on the list of endangered European monuments for 2020 was met with strong objections and harsh criticism of top Kosovo officials, who have persistently claimed that the monastery is not endangered.

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