Oliver Ivanovic laid to rest in Belgrade/PHOTOS, VIDEO
Serb politician from Kosovo Oliver Ivanovic was on Thursday laid to rest in the Alley of Distinguished Citizens in Belgrade's New Cemetery.Izvor: Beta, Tanjug
Serbian Orthodox Bishop Teodosije led the funeral service and said that Ivanovic was respected in Kosovo and in Serbia, but also abroad, and that it "was not rare" for Albanians to also respect him, and that he would be "deeply missed by everyone."
Teodosije said Ivanovic was "not point his finger at people, but talked about problems that should be resolved together" and that to him the issue of Kosovo was "not political, but a question ofhow to improve life south and north of the Ibar" - but that he was also "there in 1999 when Kosovska Mitrovica had to be saved."
"Oliver stays with us as a symbol of our resolve to be in our own, of the struggle for truth and justice," the bishop said.
Many politicians gathered for the funeral, but none of them delivered eulogies.
Among those in attendance were former Serbian President Tomislav Nikolic, PM Ana Brnbabic, Office for Kosovo and Metohija Director Marko Djuric, cabinet ministers Rasim Ljajic, Ivica Dacic, Aleksandar Vulin, Branko Ruzic, and Nenad Popopovic.
Opposition leaders Dragan Sutanovac, Zoran Zivkovic, Sasa Radulovic, Sasa Jankovic, Vuk Jeremic, Boris Tadic, Vuk Draskovic, and Dragan Djilas were also there, as were Belgrade Mayor Sinisa Mali, Serbian Army chief Ljubisa Dikovic, Patriarch Irinej, Crown Prince Aleksandar Karadjordjevic, and many other public figures.
Tanjug reported on Thursday that President Aleksandar Vucic would pay his respects on Saturday at the site in Kosovska Mitrovica where Oliver Ilic was gunned down on Tuesday.
Thousands of citizens were offering condolences earlier on Thursday for the slain Serb politician to the members of Ivanovic's family, including his widow Milena Popovic-Ivanovic.
Telegraf.rs is reporting today that Milena Popovic-Ivanovic said she and her young child would not be returning to Kosovo.
"My son and I are done with Kosovska Mitrovica, the town of fear, darkness and pain. Our Oliver gave his life for Kosovo and for Serbdom, and when he pleaded for help, asked for protection, there was nobody there. Now they say he is a hero, but where were those people who are praising him now when we needed them the most," she is quoted as saying.
A large number of citizens gathered on Wednesday in Kosovska Mitrovica to say goodbye to Oliver Ivanovic.
The leader of the Civic Initiative (GI) SDP was shot six times in front of the party premises in northern Kosovska Mitrovica on Tuesday morning, and died of his injuries in the hospital.
The casket with Ivanovic's remains was on Wednesday transported under police escort from this northern Kosovo town to Belgrade, where the Serb politician will be buried on Thursday.
The citizens who lined the streets through which the procession passed in silence today placed flowers on the vehicle transporting the casket.
Tanjug reported that there was no visible increase in police presence in the streets, closed to traffic for the convoy to pass, while a KFOR helicopter at one point flew over the town.
A Serbian Orthodox memorial service for Ivanovic was held earlier in the day in Kosovska Mitrovica, led by Bishop Teodosije.