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Video message of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Serbia on the occasion of the Statehood Day of the Republic of Serbia

Selakovic: Serbia has sincere love for Srpska and will continue to help it

Serbia respects the territorial integrity of Bosnia and Herzegovina, with which it builds best possible relations, but it sincerely loves the Republic of Srpska and will continue to help its people west of the Drina River, doing harm to none of the others, Minister of Foreign Affairs Nikola Selakovicn said today.

"The political situation is such that we live in two different countries, but both in the Republic of Srpska and in Serbia, our Serbian people makes up the majority population. When you ask me how important cooperation is, it is as if you asked me if it is good for brothers to cooperate, for brothers to speak to each other and if it is good for them to live in brotherly love. Of course it is", Selakovic said for RTRS on the occasion of the anniversary of proclamation of the first Republic of Srpska constitution.

The Head of Serbian diplomacy pointed out that Serbia and Srpska, much like they jointly marked Sretenje - the Statehood Day of Serbia, also observed the Constitution Day of the Republic of Srpska together, because in that way the Republic of Srpska continued to foster the heritage of state-building awareness of the importance of law and legal system established by Milos the Great back in 1835, as well as, as he added, all of the later Serbian rulers who passed Constitutions important for the Serbian state and history.

"It is greatly important that, at one point, the then Prime Minister, and today's President of the Republic Aleksandar Vucic and the then President of the Republic of Srpska, and today's Chairman of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Serb member of the Presidency Milorad Dodik initiated a joint celebration of the dates that point to events and personalities from our history that are a truly important element of our national identity, national consciousness and culture of remembrance, which is extremely important and seriously participates in the development of modern Serbian identity and patriotism ", Selakovic said.

He is convinced that Serbia and Srpska would continue to jointly celebrate important holidays in the future as well, and thus show that they are one - a single people, wherever and in whichever state system they lived.

To be aware that we are Serbs. We do not insult others or do anyone harm, but we love and respect our people, because without that self-respect we will not have the opportunity to show respect to anyone else, the Serbian Foreign Minister concluded.

28 February 2021
Source: Tanjug


Metropolitan Porfirije of Zagreb and Ljubljana elected as the new Patriarch of Serbia

The Holy Assembly of Bishops of the Serbian Orthodox Church elected His Eminence Metropolitan Porfirije of Zagreb-Ljubljana, PhD, as the new Serbian Patriarch, in its convocation in Memorial Cathedral of Saint Sava in Belgrade on 18 February 2021.

Immediately after the election a thanksgiving service was officiated and Many Years was chanted to the Archbishop of Pec, Metropolitan of Belgrade-Karlovci and Serbian Patriarch Porfirije. Bells at Saint Sava Cathedral in the Vracar district of Belgrade rang a few minutes before 4:00 pm indicating that the 46th Patriarch of Serbia was elected.

Newly-elected Archbishop of Pec, Metropolitan of Belgrade-Karlovci and Serbian Patriarch Porfirije (Peric) was born on 22 July 1961 in Becej, to father Radivoje and Mother Radojka. He was baptized as Prvoslav. He finished primary school in Curug, and the “Jovan Jovanovic Zmaj” Grammar School in Novi Sad. He was ordained a monk according to the rite of small schime by his spiritual father, then hieromonk Dr. Irinej (Bulovic), at Decani Monastery on Sunday of St. Thomas in 1985.

He graduated from the Faculty of Orthodox Theology in Belgrade in 1986, when the then Bishop of Raska-Prizren Diocese, future Serbian Patriarch Pavle of blessed memory, ordained him a hierodeacon at the monastery of Holy Trinity in Musutiste.

He attended postgraduate studies in Athens from 1986 until 1990. That year, upon the blessing of Bishop Dr. Irinej of Backa, he joined the monastery of Holy Archangels in Kovilj, where he was ordained as hieromonk and became its abbot.

Many young monks and novices came to the monastery following him. These were the years when the Kovilj Monastery became a spiritual center for many young people: intellectuals, artists, popular actors and rock musicians, especially from Novi Sad and Belgrade. Since then abbot Porfirije has particularly dealt with drug-addicted patients. In 2005, he formed for this purpose a therapeutic community called “The Land of the Living”, which is recognized as the most successful drug-addiction therapy project and, under the leadership of Bishop Porfirije, it has more than a hundred residents in camps throughout Serbia today.

During the ordinary meeting of the Holy Assembly of Bishops of the Serbian Orthodox Church in Belgrade on 14 May 1999 he was elected as Bishop of Jegar, Vicar of the Diocese of Backa.

He defended his PhD thesis Possibility of knowability of God in St. Paul’s understanding according to the interpretation of Saint John Chrysostom at the Faculty of Theology of the University of Athens in 2004.

He became a lecturer at the Faculty of Orthodox Theology - Department of Pastoral Psychology - succeeding famous psychiatrist, academician Dr. Vladeta Jerotic. His lectures have been attended not only by students of the Faculty of Orthodox Theology, but other Belgrade faculties as well.

Together with a group of experts: psychologists, doctors, criminologists, sociologists, Bishop Porfirije founded a civic association that deals with the resocialization of victims of destructive religious sects and cults.

Bishop Porfirije has not been just president of the Steering Board for a decade, but a real spiritus movens of the Humanitarian Fund “Privrednik”, which has provided scholarships for a great number of gifted, but poor pupils and students, regardless of their nationality or religious affiliation.

In 2005, the National Assembly elected him as representative of all Churches and religious communities, to be a member of the Council of the Republic Broadcasting Agency, and in 2008 the RBA elected him its president. As President of the Council of the Republic Broadcasting Agency, Bishop Porfirije supported the long-term interests of society and citizens, unaffected by political influences.

Since then, church radio stations have been heard in the broadcasting spectrum of Serbia. He has made a key contribution to launching of a series of radio and television shows dealing with religious topics.

In 2010, The Holy Assembly of Bishops entrusted him to establish military chaplaincy in the Serbian Armed Forces. The fruits of his labour in that field include not only the suitable legal regulations, but also the selection of military chaplains, the organization and equipping of churches at barracks and performance of the first religious services.

His expert theological works Bishop Porfirije published in magazines both in Serbia and abroad. He participated in a large number of scientific conferences and symposia across the globe.

Bishop Porfirije, as one of the most prominent contemporary Serbian clergymen and intellectuals, has an extremely wide circle of friends, not only in the Homeland, and he fosters personal friendship and close cooperation with priests and representatives of other Churches and religious communities.

He speaks Greek, English, German and uses the Russian language, while his style of communication is always adapted to his interlocutors.

He was enthroned as the Metropolitan of Zagreb and Ljubljana on 13 July 2014 in the Cathedral Church of the Transfiguration of the Lord in Zagreb. The solemn Hierarchal Liturgy was served by Serbian Patriarch Irinej, accompanied by a large number of archbishops of the Serbian Church and other sister Churches, as well as priests and monks, and pious people.

18 February 2021
Source: SPC/Serbian Orthodox Church


Minister Selakovic: Serbia attaches special attention to relations with Bosnia and Herzegovina

Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Serbia Nikola Selakovic met today with Ambassador of Bosnia and Herzegovina to Serbia Aida Smajic.

Minister Selakovic emphasized that in the period ahead, the political cooperation between Serbia and Bosnia-Herzegovina could be intensified thus reaching the optimal level in all fields, despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic.

Selakovic said that Serbia attached special importance to the development of economic relations, both in terms of the volume of trade and the level of investments, given that Bosnia and Herzegovina was one of the most important economic partners of Serbia.

Furthermore, Selakovic pointed out that there was mutual interest in the revitalization of roads and railways connecting the two countries, and highlighted the importance of building infrastructure, further working on energy projects on the Drina River, as well as of joint participation on third markets.

The Serbian Foreign Minister added that he hoped that cooperation would continue through the holding of joint sessions of the Government of Serbia and the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Minister Selakovic emphasized that Serbia was very interested in continuing and further intensifying cooperation through the trilateral format with Turkey, which was already running smoothly, and that it was ready at the same time for cooperation within regional and multilateral initiatives.

The Minister said that Serbia was committed to maintaining good political relations, that it supported the territorial integrity of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in line with the Dayton Accords, being a guarantor, and strived for active cooperation with both central and entity authorities.

According to him, Serbia had an essential interest for the stability of Bosnia and Herzegovina, it supported any agreement reached by the two entities and the three constituent peoples, but was explicitly against imposing solutions that were not the result of consensus, and believed that such moves pose a threat to the stability of both Bosnia and Herzegovina and the wider region, Selakovic said.

Minister Selakovic pointed out that Serbia was grateful to Bosnia and Herzegovina for its principled position on the issue of Kosovo and Metohija and respect for the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Serbia.

9 February 2021

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