Statement of the Raška-Prizren Diocese and the Embassy of the United Kingdom

Bishop Teodosije of Raška and Prizren has met today at the Gračanica Monastery with the British Ambassador in Pristina, Mr. Nicholas Abbott. The bishop conveyed to the ambassador deep concern regarding the recent statements made by British MP Ms Alicia Kearns, who claimed that illegal weapons were illegally smuggled through Serbian Orthodox churches in northern Kosovo. The bishop emphasised that this allegation, which has since been refuted by KFOR, has significantly worsened the security of the Serbian Orthodox Church (SPC) in Kosovo and Metohija, and may seriously hampers the process of de-escalating tensions in northern Kosovo and the dialogue process. The bishop reiterated the position of our Church that we remain firmly committed to the peace among all residents in Kosovo and Metohija and cannot allow any abuse or political manipulation of our churches.

Ambassador Abbott expressed his concerns about current events in north Kosovo, the important role of the Church in improving community relations, and the urgent need for de-escalation.