My most cordial greetings to all citizens of Yugoslavia and the world for Christmas and the New Year holidays with wishes that they be celebrated in good health and in good spirits. On the occasion of the Day of Christ’s Birth I express it with our traditional greetings “God’s Peace – Christ is Born”. My wife and my sons want to extend these greetings and wish happiness and peace to everyone. It is our ardent wish to go back home as soon as possible, and we desire the same to all the refugees who, like us, have been forced to abandon their homeland.
The year 2000 will be recorded with golden letters in Serbia’s history. The majestic victory of democracy in the Federal and Serbian parliamentary elections, coupled with the affirmation of the will of the people on 5 October, has filled us with pride and evoked admiration from all over the world. For the first time in more than half a century, instead of one-party arbitrary rule, we have a democratic government elected by free elections.
We will remember the year 2000 as one of tremendous achievement but it is still only the beginning, only the promise of a better future which must be realised. The year 2001 will be one of hard work for the good of everyone. All citizens must join in and tackle the job with enthusiasm and pride. The new government has started well but the major work is still ahead of us. The people are expecting radical reforms that are indispensable for the recovery of society and the state.
The interest of the people is in the supreme law for those engaged in public affairs, and this interest demands that political priorities at this historic time should be: emergency measures to ensure the basic living conditions of the population during the winter, urgent assistance to the most threatened of the population, the fight against corruption and crime, the establishment of the rule of law, radical reforms of society and economy, the raising of living standards, the consolidation of democracy and democratic institutions, finding a permanent solution for relations between Serbia and Montenegro and the preservation of the union, close relations with Republika Srpska, regulating the status of Kosovo – Metohia and not tolerating terrorism
Also vital: the reform of the national health service and social services, the implementation of an independent judiciary, the creation and operation of a free market economy that is totally transparent and open to all investors. A national programme to create jobs and attract foreign investment, a training programme and concern for the employed and the unemployed must also be among our top priorities.
By solving all these problems Yugoslavia will become a modern democratic economic power and a factor of peace in Southeast Europe and in the world, a country that respects human rights, all religious communities and ethnic minorities.
These difficult tasks are ahead of us but now there finally exists conditions for their implementation. The new government has a clear mandate to put into action the changes. It carries great responsibility but I am convinced it will not betray the hope of the people. We now have peace to heal the wounds, the pain and put right the mistakes from the recent past and to guide the nation towards reconstruction and rebirth.
As the heir to throne and head of the Royal Karadjordjevic House, I
will - as always – serve all citizens regardless of their political
views. I will also fully respect the government elected by the people.
My constituents are the people and my concern is for the welfare of everyone.