- Government of Montenegro
An open letter from Prime Minister Zdravko Krivoka...
An open letter from Prime Minister Zdravko Krivokapić
After numerous statements, opinions and press releases, on the occasion of my visit to the Patriarch of the Serbian Orthodox Church, His Holiness, Mr. Porfirije, I have an obligation and a personal need to speak straight from the heart for the sake of my people in Montenegro and abroad.
I accepted my path as Prime Minister because of the people and the victory over dirt in which the soul of the people finds its way to the truth, even when the truth is persistently concealed.
I accepted my path as Prime Minister with the blessing of Metropolitan Amfilohije, to be the leader of our struggle for love, in which he won magnificently.
I accepted this path in a life in which I already had everything, and didn't need anything, except God. I accepted to be misunderstood and condemned because that was also a call for change that Montenegro was crying out for, and I cried out for freedom, in which no one can take anything away from us anymore, in which no one can forbid us anything anymore, after thousands and thousands of learned and taught lessons, I decided to be a servant to my people.
On that path, I defend the shrines of my past and my future, my shrines. As the Prime Minister-designate, I promised that the first task of our Government would be to propose a different Law on Freedom of Religion, the law of peace and justice, and when it was adopted by the parliamentary majority, on the day of the birth of our Saint Basil of Ostrog, my people defeated evil.
The property of the Serbian Orthodox Church, but also the shrines of other religious communities, are thus finally protected.
On behalf of the Government and the state of Montenegro, I will conclude an Agreement with the Serbian Orthodox Church, my church, in my country, although it is not the foundation or condition for the protection of church property. Church property is protected by the adoption of the Law on Freedom of Religion, but the conclusion of the Fudamental Agreement is an act of civilization that has been signed with the Islamic community, the Jewish community and the Holy See, but not with the Serbian Orthodox Church.
The conclusion of this Agreement is an obligation and a need for justice for both the people and God who knows no nationalities but knows equality. The need of my Patriarch, my Metropolitan and my Bishop Joanikije, is also the need of the Montenegrin Prime Minister, who is a believer and a man who shares the spirit of his kin, although this is often considered a sin.
The conclusion of this Agreement is the need of our Metropolitan Amfilohije, whose blessing on all our souls I feel as the greatest duty to fight for what he unwaveringly, rebelliously defended, against political and all other blackmail, and a game that pulls strings outside Montenegro and outside the Serbian Orthodox Church.
I will do everything to preserve his shadow, but I do not agree and I will not agree with anyone who nullifies the Blessing of the Metropolitan and his clearly expressed will.
I went to Patriarch Porfirije, despite my wife's health problems, not realising that I was entering a political game, which had long since begun outside the Serbian Orthodox Church, His Holiness and Bishop Joanikije, about which neither they – and I sincerely believe that - nor I knew anything. I went there with a desire to discuss the said Agreement.
I proposed 30 October as a possible date for signing the Agreement, a possible and not an exclusive date, solely out of desire to honor Metropolitan Amfilohije, on the anniversary of his death. I suggested to His Holiness to set a date for signing, if he wants to sign it before that date, openly stating the fact that I cannot sign the Agreement before the Cabinet session at which the text of the Agreement would be adopted, that all Cabinet members must express themselves on this subject, not just me.
I have dedicated my life to my family, church and profession. I hate the thought of someone thinking that I, Zdravko Krivokapić, can and want to question the signing of the Fundamental Agreement, which is also my personal foundation.
I admit, non-pragmatically, but only from the heart and depth of my soul, I expressed my desire that Bishop Joanikije becomes the future Metropolitan.
We ended our conversation in a good mood and an atmosphere of dialogue, respect and friendship.
In another, as far as I can see now, political game that is openly played outside the Serbian Orthodox Church, I am persistently presented in the media and the public of Serbia and Montenegro as a traitor of everything Serbian or everything Montenegrin, and now of everything ecclesiastical, because the traitor is not only the one who blindly follows the instructions and policies of the Democratic Front. In the background, and I am now speaking openly to the people of Montenegro, one of the main roles is played by the leader of the Democratic Front, Mr. Andrija Mandić, who directly and personally exerted pressure to postpone the election of the Metropolitan until the the Government reshuffle.
Zdravko Krivokapić did not, and the people of Montenegro must know this clearly, say anything to the Patriarch last night that would endanger the interests of Montenegro, nor the interests of the believers of the Serbian Orthodox Church, but Zdravko Krivokapić obviously endangered the interests of the Democratic Front.
I did not agree to such blackmail, because the Government of Montenegro and Montenegro, during my term of office will not be blackmailed, not even by a part of the parliamentary majority, to which the signing of this Agreement – which is now clear – is an excuse to overthrow the Government.
I will be direct: gentlemen, leaders of the Democratic Front and all those who hide in front of or behind them, do not teach me about my faith and my church. You showed your attitude towards the Church, Metropolitan Amfilohije and thus the people of Montenegro at the meeting near Ostrog immediately after the parliamentary elections.
I was obliged not to agree to such a political subterfuge, of which I believe either my bishops or my Patriarch were not aware last night.
For the sake of truth, I want to tell and explain this political background to the people of Montenegro.
As the Prime Minister of the people, I work and I will work according to my conscience and heart, and I will not agree to be a pawn in the political game of a part of the parliamentary majority. I will carry the burden and the will of my people as taught by the late Metropolitan Amfilohije, believing that the truth will eventually find its way to the hearts of all who believe in it.
So help me God.
Prime Minister of Montenegro Zdravko Krivokapić