B92: Serb nation today has two states, Dodik says16 February 2018 | 05:49 | FOCUS News Agency
The leader of the Serb entity in Bosnia-Herzegovina spoke at a ceremony marking Serbia's Statehood Day, held in this village where the decision was made in 1804 to launch an uprising against Ottoman Turks, occupying Serbia at the time.
Dodik said this place "sublimates in the best way the Serb nation's historic striving toward freedom."
Dodik congratulated Statehood Day and stressed that Serbs have been spending their entire national life in endless fight for freedom - and, referring to the uprising's leader, Djordje "Karadjordje" Petrovich, added that Serbs "produced not one, but many Karadjordjes, along with known and unknown heroes who fought for freedom."
"Today, Serbia has been returned to the Serb people, while the Serb people, regardless of where they are - here and there, near and far away - are gathered around the national idea, and the state of Serbia - the idea called freedom, and our national pride and identity," Dodik said.
He stressed that Serbs had to overcome many mistakes, one of them being Yugoslavia - "because as Serbs were creating Yugoslavia they wished to create freedom for others too, not only for themselves - to have those others, in the end, in the disintegration of Yugoslavia, create their own states."
"But they also returned us to Serbia, and today the Serb nation has two states - Serbia and the Serb Republic (RS). We are proudly gathered around the idea of the Serb nation," RS president said.
He repeated the words of Serbia's president, that there are no "Croat, Bosnian, or other" Serbs - but only a united Serb nation, with its traditions, its slava (family patron saint feast), its language and script.
"It is an honor to have been given the opportunity to send a message of togetherness and unity on this unique day for the Serb people, (a message) of preservation of our identity, pride, our historical successes and the marking of our suffering, which has been huge," Dodik said.
The Serb nation, he continued, produced Nikola Tesla and many other world-renowned figures, and today "rightly celebrates the day of Serbia and all holidays, and speaks about freedom - because we are the leaders of freedom in these areas, gathered under the flags of Serbia and the RS."
"The Serb people has suffered in the last century, and let this century be a century of our Serb freedom. Wherever you are - happy Serbia's holiday, which gathered us here, in difficult conditions, after several centuries of fighting for freedom and suffering, our ancestors who decided to rise and were capable of creating, only a few decades after, the most modern constitution of the time. That speaks about us and our potential," Dodik concluded.
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