Grenell clashes with Kosovo official Vlora Citaku over Serbs celebrating St Vitus Day as their holiday

The acting US Director of National Intelligence and former presidential envoy for Kosovo, Richard Grenell, and Kosovo’s former Ambassador in Washington, Vlora Citaku, clashed in a war of words over the celebration of St Vitus day (Vidovdan, in Serbian) which Serbs mark in memory of the battle of Kosovo in 1389.

“Today we honor the Vidovdan heroes. On this day in 1389, the battle against the Ottomans in Kosovo began. Today is a memorial day to Saint Prince Lazar and the Serbian holy martyrs,” Grenell wrote in Twitter post.

The Serb ruler Prince Lazar led an army to battle against the Ottomans, slowing down their campaign to conquer Europe. Lazar was killed by the Ottomans and the Christian army was defeated. According to some historic accounts, Lazar’s army was thought to be winning and messengers were dispatched to several European capitals, including Paris where the bells of Notre Dame were said to have been rung to celebrate the Christian victory over the Ottomans.

Grenell’s tweet drew a response from Citaku who said that the battle was fought by a Balkan, not a Serb army. “This was hardly a Serb battle; it was a Balkan army that fought against the Ottoman conquest. This battle became the foundational myth that continues to feed the Serbian nationalism since 19th century keeping all of us hostage,” she wrote in her Twitter post.

Grenell replied saying that she was “offended by too much”. “It must be exhausting finding an outrage in everything. The people want jobs and solutions – extend a hand,” he wrote.

Serbian Foreign Minister, Nikola Selakovic, also reacted: “Attempts to erase traces of Serbian existence in Kosovo and Metohija by brutally forging history have acquired perverse dimensions in the claims that not the Serbian, but the “Balkan” army fought in the Battle of Kosovo.  The Albanian political extremists are doing everything to invent the continuity of the Albanian presence in Kosovo and Metohija, although there is no material evidence that the Arbanasi, or Arnauts, lived there in the Middle Ages, let alone that they took part in the Battle of Kosovo.”

(RTV, 29.06.2021)


This post is also available in: Italiano

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