SPC bishop in letter to UNESCO

Bishop of Raška-Prizren Eparchy Teodosije warned Saturday that the Serbian cultural heritage in Kosovo was put in immediate danger by unneeded politicization.

Source: Tanjug
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In a letter to UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova, relating the official position of the Serbian Patriarch Irinej, the bishop said every new attempt to take away the Serbian heritage in Kosovo led to its assimilation and loss of identity, which was guaranteed by the international community.

The letter also notes that a negative development of events would hardly contribute to building trust between Belgrade and Priština, while politicization of cultural heritage could further endanger the overall stability of the region.

He also expressed concern over the recent discussion in the UNESCO Committee for the Protection of World Cultural Heritage in Paris, when an attempt was made to re-designate several Serbian Orthodox monasteries - the Patriarchate of Peć, Visoki Dečani, Gračanica and the Temple of Our Holy Lady of Ljeviš in Prizren - as Kosovo's heritage.

Bishop Teodosije stressed any renaming and leaving out the name of the Republic of Serbia in connection with these four UNESCO World Cultural Heritage monuments would seriously jeopardize their protection.

He noted that the exclusion of Serbia would end ten years of continuity in protection.

“This would undoubtedly lead to very serious consequences, considering that 150 Serbian Orthodox holy sites have been destroyed or damaged in the past 12 years,” the bishop noted.

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