Podgorica, March 31, 2016
A rally dedicated to the seventeenth anniversary of the NATO aggression against Yugoslavia was held in Podgorica to the sound of sirens and shots of a newsreel.
Several thousands gathered on the main square of the Montenegrin capital for the occasion. Bishop Joanikije of Budimlja-Niksic, together with the clergy, prayed for the repose of all those killed during the bombardments of 1999.
“We are commemorating here the names of children and adults, and especially servicemen who were killed under the NATO bombs and at the hands of Albanian terrorists during the last war,” said Bishop Joanikije to those gathered with him, and then enumerating all the victims’ names: those of children, adults and servicemen of the Yugoslavian army.
“These victims represent the whole of Montenegro at the time when the criminal armada was destroying our motherland, and our duty is to remember them. The Montenegrin authorities should commemorate them as well, because these victims are not the Vietnamese, but Montenegrins. Our powers that be for the sake of intensified NATO propaganda are burying these victims in oblivion,” the hierarch said, noting that the authorities have not installed any obelisk or memorial plaque to these people and have not commemorated them.
“However, in defiance of the will of the people they recognized the false state of Kosovo. They voted for the transfer of Serbian shrines of Kosovo and Metochia to those who burned them down,” he said, stressing that the role of the Montenegrin authorities in the country’s project of joining NATO is very shameful. The authorities, in Bishop Joanikije’s view, have become “a rag for wiping off the blood shed by NATO and the Albanian terrorists.”
The bishop emphasized that Montenegro does not need NATO at all: “If they ever come, they will come as invaders, as criminals to the scene of their crime.”