HRH Crown Prince Alexander II about politics and rumors that he is leaving Serbia
How do you see the current moment for Serbian people, after the failure of these elections?
I am concerned that this is a very dangerous moment for Serbian people. The repeated failure of the presidential elections speaks about the deep crisis of the political system, and such crisis opens space to the unwanted activities that might worsen the international position of our country, and lead to further reduction of our economic potentials. We are already way below the place we should be and the role that we should play in modern Europe. If this trend of deteriorating is not stopped soon, I am concerned we will have ages instead of decades to catch up with the time, with dramatic consequences in all areas of life.
Which are, in your opinion, major problems for stabilization of democratic processes in the country?
Above all, institutional stability! Democracy is a matter of stable procedures. Legal security, which is essential for any progress, means there is no political voluntarism and centers of power outside constitutional frame. Without it, there is no planning and without planning, there is no sustainable progress, without progress, the state run by law and order and equal rights turns into a society of chaos. Such a country is abandoned by everybody and only those who have no respect of law will come to it.
The Crown Council has proposed reestablishment of constitutional parliamentary monarchy. Do you think such model would be widely accepted, and what are its advantages?
It is achievable that constitutional parliamentary monarchy, which is advocated in the statement of the advisory bodies of the Crown, would be broadly accepted as a serious viable solution as in the European Union. However, I know that the answer to its alternative is precisely what the voters have for the third time said: this is not the way forward! I am saying this with deep concern and with no joy, I am saying this because I do care about democracy, progress, peace, stability, I care about stopping fights over absolute power. There is no progress where all executive, legislative, judicial and any other power is in one’s hands. One must know where the limits of principles are, what the areas of compromise, what are the fundamental interests of the nation and what can be negotiated. There is a price that must not be paid to remain in power. That is elementary.
How do the unsettled circumstances in the country, and particularly the fact that this is all happening in the eve of the bicentennial of the modern Serbian state, influence you personally? Are you disappointed because things are not well in Serbia, even after the democratic changes?
I am very hurt as a descendant of those who proudly created this country with their people and for the people! I am hurt because I have personally met the majority of personages in our political scene, and I do not have a negative attitude about them. However, for half a century there is a long heritage of irresponsibility in this country that is so difficult and deeply rooted, that it is not enough just to replace the people who are running a country, all the remnants of the undemocratic system of the past must be put in the history book and only considered as bitter experience. When will we start living? When and where will our children live? The crisis of the Government and the Parliament is not what I am talking about. That is normal, that happens everywhere in democracies. Governments come and go, and it is good for us to understand that and to realize it is not the end of the world. But, the crisis of the Government and the Parliament must not transform into the crisis of the society and the state, because the price would be too high.
Do you see yourself as the head of the State ? How would you, as the monarch, deal with the issue of Kosovo and Metohija?
Since the day I was born, I have been brought up to become a constitutional King one day. That has nothing to do with the events here and today, it is the essence of the principle of constitutional monarchy. But I have also been brought up to be aware that the fate of the country and the nation is not decided by the will of the head of the state, but by team work and political consensus of all political factors. Kosovo and Metohija is not a taboo, but everybody must seriously look into the following: if we can renounce Kosovo and Metohija, is there anything that we can’t and will not renounce? If the issue of borders is really of little important in the new Europe, how come that such an experiment is starting with us? There are more developed countries than us, there are countries which have centuries of good neighborly relationships, but I don’t see them competing to exchange territories and renounce their borders.
Could disappointment in the current state of affairs in the country lead you to give up everything and leave the country?
I do not think about that. I am home.
“Vecernje novosti”, 20. November 2003.
Copyright © 1998 NJ.K.V. Prestolonaslednik Aleksandar II
Sva prava pridržana