Prefect, institute slam Serbia’s ‘attempt to claim Dubrovnik’s literature’

NEWS 17.01.2022 17:46
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Source: Grgo Jelavic/PIXSELL

Dubrovnik-Neretva County head Nikola Dobroslavic said on Monday that Serbia's new cultural heritage law, whereby Serbia lays claim to Dubrovnik's literature, was a "new insult to the city and the county."

The law confirms the Greater Serbia project, which has not died out in Serbia, he said.

“That project lays claim to Croatian territory, in this case Dubrovnik. Three decades ago that Greater Serbia project was destroying Dubrovnik’s historical centre, pillaged and set fire to Konavle, Zupa Dubrovacka and the Dubrovnik littoral, and caused a lot of evil to the entire territory of the former (Yugoslavia). It caused huge damage to their own people in Croatia and Kosovo, and now they are doing it to their compatriots in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro,” Dobroslavic said.

He added that Croatia defeated the Greater Serbia project in the 1990s. “We won’t allow it to be realised. Dubrovnik and its cultural heritage has always been Croatian. The Serbian authorities should forget about laying claim to others’ territory and cultural heritage. The citizens of Dubrovnik can relax. We and our government will preserve the cultural heritage of the Croatian Dubrovnik, which will remain so forever.”

The airport project in Trebinje, BiH fits the Greater Serbia plan as there is no other rational explanation, Dobroslavic said.

Serbia laid claim to Croatian cultural assets before

The Croatian Language Institute today condemned in the strongest terms the passing of Serbia’s Cultural Heritage Act on 23 December, specifically the part on “old and rare library material” which consists of “Dubrovnik’s literary editions which belong to both the Serbian and the Croatian culture up to the year 1867.”

“Although the Serbian cultural and political public has often expressed the wish and need to lay claim to Croatian cultural assets,” the institute said, making this stand official by law is “an additional aggressive step in laying claim to the Croatian cultural heritage.”

It is a continuation of administrative, legal and political procedures aimed at diminishing and laying claim to the Croatian linguistic and cultural heritage as part of common cultural assets, the institute said.

Regardless of the motives, the institute said, which are most likely political, even the “admission” that Dubrovnik’s literature is also Croatian, not just Serbian, as claimed in Serbian cultural circles until recently, the institute finds “such a perfidious act transparent and extremely inappropriate, because Dubrovnik’s literature and Dubrovnik’s culture were and will remain solely Croatian, as one of the pearls of the Croatian millenary cultural heritage.”

The institute recalled that Serbian politics recently declared as the Bunjevci language the Croatian neo-Shtokavian Ikavian dialect which Bunjevci Croats in the northern Serbian province of Vojvodina have been speaking for centuries.

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