|STATEMENT OF HRH CROWN PRINCE ALEXANDER's CHANCELLERY
The Karadjordjevic's and the Funeral of Tsar Nicholas II
In its issue of 18 - 19 July 1998, the Belgrade 'Danas' published an interview given recently by HRH Crown Prince Alexander to the Tiker agency. In the interview, printed by 'Danas' under the heading "This Government must go", HRH Crown Prince Alexander replied to the questions that dealt with the Kosovo crisis, the burial of mortal remains of Tsar Nicholas II and other members of the imperial family in St. Petersburg on 17 July and the possible transfer of mortal remains of his grandmother, HRH Queen Maria, and his father, King Peter II, to the family burial place at Oplenac.
Tiker agency reported the views of His Royal Highness on these topics very correctly, but to the surprise of this Office the editorial board of 'Danas' thought it fit to omit the question and answer relating to HRH's possible attendance at the funeral of the mortal remains of Tsar Nicholas II and insert instead "a box" (entrefilet) containing the absurd contention that HRH Crown Prince Alexander and other members of our Royal House did not go to the St. Petersburg funeral since they were "short of cash". HRH Crown Prince Alexander allegedly did not have the money to pay for staying at a St. Petersburg hotel and for "considerable expenses" that the purchase of wreaths would have involved! The anonymous column-writer, who hides under the initials R.D., quoted "well informed sources close to the Karadjordjevic family" in support of his baseless claims and triumphantly concluded that "The House of Karadjordjevic obviously does not have the funds for all that".
This Office is amazed that a serious paper like 'Danas' should publish such an untruth without having first made an effort to check the accuracy of its "reports" with us. This is not at all to its credit and for the sake of journalistic professionalism and ethics we ask 'Danas to publish this denial.
HRH Crown Prince Alexander did not attend the St. Petersburg funeral for the same reasons as all other representatives of royal houses of Europe and Asia, with one exception. These were the same reasons that motivated His Holiness the Patriarch of All-Russia Alexy II not to take part. His Royal Highness, however, still welcomes the appearance of President Yeltsin at the funeral and believes that his speech on the occasion was wise and statesmanlike. He hopes that his speech will help to heal and overcome the schisms and divisions caused among the Russian people by the Bolsheviks. It is worth noting in this connection that the bearers of power in Serbia have never made a similar attempt.
London, 22 July 1998