Council of Europe Secretary General condemns the attack against a Serbian Orthodox Church in Kosovo

Published on March 9, 2007, Council of Europe

Category: Violence Against Christian Serbs and Their Holy Places

Statement by Terry Davis

STRASBOURG , 07.03.2007 - I strongly condemn the desecration of St-John the Forerunner Orthodox Church in the Kosovo city of Pec. The Serbian Orthodox church had been damaged during the riots of March 2004 and renovated last year as part of a Council of Europe led programme. Our organisation was involved in the restoration because the damaged monuments are part of our common European heritage. The reconstruction was carried out by workers from all ethnic communities living in Kosovo and thus reinforced the sense of common ownership and the prospects for reconciliation.

Those resorting to violence are threatening the future of everyone living in Kosovo. A future is more than a status. It is determined by the quality of life, not by the quantity of borders. If the people of Kosovo do not find the strength to free themselves from the grip of ethnic violence and hate, Kosovo will become a prison for the majority and the minorities alike, regardless of what the UN Security Council will eventually decide.

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