Metropolitan Amfilohije submits proposal to amend Law on Freedom of Religion or Belief and the Legal Status of Religious Communities, discussions continue
The Government of Montenegro and the Episcopal Council of the Serbian Orthodox Church in Montenegro issued the following joint press release after their meeting that took place on Friday, Feb. 14, 2020:
Podgorica, Montenegro (14 February 2020) – The Government of Montenegro and the Metropolitanate of Montenegro and the Littoral and other dioceses of the Serbian Orthodox Church in Montenegro discusses today the Law on Freedom of Religion or Belief and the Legal Status of Religious Communities, at the invitation of Prime Minister Duško Marković.
Today’s meeting ended in a spirit of mutual respect with the assessment of both sides that the meeting was held in a constructive and open atmosphere. Both sides fully expressed their views on outstanding issues related to the Law. The Church continues to maintain the view that it is necessary to speak of amendments to the Law, not of its implementation, because in the Church’s view, the Law is not in accordance with the Constitution or international standards. The Government believes that through dialogue and mutual trust, as well as through the provision of additional and appropriate guarantees, this Law can be applied as a modern one and in line with the Constitution and European standards.
Representatives of the Episcopal Council of the Serbian Orthodox Church, led by Metropolitan Amfilohije (Radović), submitted to the Government a proposal that included changes to certain provisions that the Church sees as controversial. The Government took notice of this initiative, assessing that a comprehensive consideration of not only this Law but also of other opportunities offered by the legal system was required to provide an answer to this question.
It was agreed that the talks would continue at expert level.
PUBLIC RELATIONS SERVICE OF THE GOVERNMENT OF MONTENEGRO
EPISCOPAL COUNCIL OF THE SERBIAN ORTHODOX CHURCH IN MONTENEGRO