VESTI, Australian edition,
November 7, 2005
Page 12, written by R.Loncar
IN THE EVE OF THE ROYAL VISIT
TO AUSTRALIA (1)
DIASPORA IS AMBASSADOR IN
- Do not forget your
beautiful homeland, be good Australians, and make friends with
everyone, Prince Alexander sends the word
U POSETI ZEMLJACIMA: Bračni par Karađorđević
We look forward to friendship
and we are very happy to be coming to Australia to visit the Serbian
community there. We are grateful to this big, democratic country for the
hospitality and the safety that it has given to our people. We would
like to see harmony and good will amongst people, regardless of their
religious or national affiliation – pointed out The Crown Prince
Alexander II in an interview for “Vesti”, shortly before his trip. His
Royal Highness mentioned that this visit is of particular significance,
because of “the support to the establishment of St. Sava College in
Sydney - the first Serbian Orthodox School to be founded in Australia”.
Following the invitation from His Grace Milutin, Bishop of Australia and
New Zeeland’s Serbian Orthodox Church, Prince Alexander and his wife
Princess Katherine will be staying in Australia from November 9th
to 14th. Precisely on Princess Katherine’s birthday -
November 13th - Their Royal Highnesses will lay a foundation
stone of the future Serbian College in Sydney. During their visit to
Australia a numerous encounters with the Diaspora will be organised,
although this is not their first time in the fifth continent.
wife and I had the pleasure to be invited several years ago by Lord
Alistair Mac Alpine to North West Australia and we stayed with him at
Broome. It was a fascinating trip which included a camping visit to the
outback. My wife had visited Australia before me” – recalls Prince
Asked by “Vesti” about his message to the Serbian Diaspora, His Royal
“Don’t ever forget your beautiful fatherland, but be good Australians
and make friends with everyone. Our fatherland has gone through hard and
painful times over the last few decades and there has been tragedy and
pain. We must have reconciliation and reforms. Our task is to recover
and work on becoming a member of the European Union. Serbs in Australia
can help us in the process of recovery by encouraging change and
observance of our international obligations.
According to The Crown Prince, the Diaspora is “a key to the recovery
of the fatherland”.
-The Diaspora is our ambassador in the world and must promote the
positive democratic orientation of our people. It has the duty to make
friends with everyone regardless of religion or ethnic affiliation. I
know it has been hard for many in the Diaspora, but now it’s time to
rally together and help the fatherland by encouraging investment and
volunteer work - says Prince Alexander.
Since Prince Alexander II is a great supporter of investing into
homeland, we asked him about the direction that Serbia is taking and
about the prospects of the State Union of Serbia and Montenegro.
-The position of the unresolved status has to come to an end through a
fully free and fair referendum, which is supposed to take place next
year. Please note that I am proud of having Montenegrin blood as well
running through my veins. As an ardent advocate of democracy and human
rights, I must stress the importance of resolving a situation through
dialogue and by peaceful means, and always in the interest of the
people. The people of Serbia and Montenegro expect a better future in
Europe where they can live in peace and prosperity. A barrage of
rhetoric is not in the interest of prosperity, good social protection
and prospective investments.
Crown Prince also pointed out that “we must fulfil our international
obligations, and this applies to everyone”.
Some may not be in favour of it, but we have to move forward and we have
to settle the accounts. I don’t think that 9 million people in the
fatherland should suffer for the sake of a few individuals, and I have
insisted on this several times in my conversations with the
representatives of the international community. We mustn’t squander any
more time and delay our entry into the European Union and other
institutions. It is our human duty to see that everyone has a better
future and those who have committed a crime should be men enough to
stand up and defend themselves.
Not to be the last
Royal Highness calls upon us “to unite and work skilfully on the future
of our fatherland”.
cannot afford to waste time on divisions and arguments, because we are
capable of working together. Everyone around us is joining the European
Union and we cannot afford to be the last. We have to take our position
in Europe to which we have so much to offer.
Asked to qualify “the best future for the fatherland and the
Karadjordjevic family in it”, Crown Prince Alexander said:
the Head of the Dynasty, I hope to see the future as a democratic
constitutional monarchy, since it depends upon stability, unity and
continuity – all of which may be provided through monarchy. It would be
in the best interest of the citizens to have a Head of State who is not
a politician and is not a member of any political party. Constitutional
monarchies of Japan, Sweden, Belgium, Norway, Canada, Australia, Spain,
etc, have proven to be able to ensure political stability.
response to the question about his view of the future of Republika
Srpska, the interlocutor of “Vesti” says:
Republika Srpska will and must have a great future if it remains united
along the lines I already mentioned above and while respecting its
international obligations. My wife and I have visited Republika Srpska
several times and we love it very much. I hate to see the isolation and
the lack of investors and jobs. Let me say again: we must work together
on finding solutions for the region we live in. The horror and the pain
caused by the conflicts are very much alive with many people, families
and the maimed.
Prince Alexander also points out that “we must aim at moving forward by
bringing down borders and mourning together”.
Our people cannot live in ghettos - that is not their future. We must
love each other and love our neighbours. We must move ahead. We must
also fight corruption. We must put people in the first place. We must be
a part of Europe – concludes Crown Prince Alexander II Karadjordjevic.
is wonderful to be in fatherland
How would you describe the past four years of life in Belgrade, after
you came back in July 2001?
-Amazing, wonderful, emotional, and I still can’t believe that I’m
living in my fatherland. We have travelled extensively throughout Serbia
Montenegro and Republika Srpska and it’s been an extraordinary
experience. We’ve met and made friends with many people. My wife and her
foundation have been working very hard on providing humanitarian
assistance, and we have therefore visited many hospitals and medical
centres - says The Crown Prince.
Treading the King’s
Crown Prince Alexander II will be meeting Australian Serbs 45 years
after his father King Peter II Karadjordjevic visited the Serbian
community in the fifth continent. According to the Internet (www.canberraserbs.com),
the last Yugoslav King visited Australia in early October 1960.
Memory of his father
do you fell in Belgrade today?
- It feels wonderful to be living in the home of my father and my
grandfather, which they have built. I often tell my wife and my sons
about what I heard from my father about Dedinje and his childhood days.
I am truly sorry about the fact that he never returned to fatherland and
that he never lived to see the day when we all return home. He was very
homesick all his life and he never stopped longing to be home with his
people. He will, however, be coming home soon from the monastery of St.
Sava in Libertyville near Chicago to finally rest in peace forever in
Oplenac – says Prince Alexander.