Kosovska Mitrovica - Belgrade, ̀ay 27, 2001
Priest Velimir Stojanovic, who lives with his family in the churchyard of the Serbian Orthodox Church of St. Sava in the southern part of Kosovska Mitrovica, told Tanjug that the Greek soldiers protecting this shrine have forbidden the use of the church bells.
"Representatives of KFOR introduced this ban with the explanation that Orthodox church bells irritate the Albanians," says Father Velimir. "The last time the bells were heard was on Easter Sunday, April 15 of this year," he explained, adding that so far he has not publicized this ban because he thought it was temporary. "The church bells did not ring on Ascension Day (Spasovdan, May 25) and I think that this is not good for either the church or the people," said Father Velimir.
Every day, five times a day, the song of the muezzins from the minarets of three mosques in the southern, Albanian part of the town can be heard. A fourth mosque is open and undisturbed in the village of Zabari, near Kosovska Mitrovica.
Tanjug / Glas Javnosti
Translated by S. Lazovic (May 27, 2001)