The head of the Serbian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Irinej, said that Serbia cannot give up on Kosovo, and if the price for the entry into the European Union (EU) is losing Kosovo, then, he said, we would rather be out of Europe, the In Serbia website reports today (November 10, 2013).
"If the price of entry to Europe is to secede Kosovo, then we have to say 'thank you but no thank you' to Europe. We prefer to stay alone without Europe, if it must be, but with our Kosovo," said Patriarch Irinej receiving at the Patriarchate, the participants of international Pan-European conference on human and religious rights.
The Patriarch said that Serbia cannot give up Kosovo and that the international community must find a solution because "if we managed to live three centuries with Siptars (persons of Albanian descent), why couldn't we live together today?" Kosovo is our history, culture, our spirituality, the Patriarch said and urged the international community to allow the Serb refugees to return to Kosovo.
Kosovo was a province of Serbia until February 2008, when it seceded and declared itself an independent nation. Serbia continues today to declare Kosovo's secession illegal, and refuses to recognize it as a separate nation.