Archbishop Jovan (John) VI

Stop the terror, persecution
and discrimination on religious grounds
conducted by the Government of FYROMacedonia!

The persecution on religious basis in FYROMacedonia – continues!

Filed under: General — April 23, 2013 @ 1:09 pm

The US State Department published its regular Human Rights Report on FYROMacedonia.

The biggest accent is put on the government’s failure fully to respect the rule of law, primarily reflected in the interference in the judiciary and the media, in the selective prosecution of political opponents of the country’s leaders and significant levels of government corruption. The report stresses the existence of police impunity and the political interference in the judiciary, its favoritism, inefficiency and corruption that slowed the delivery of justice.

As one of the most acute problems, the report does not omit to mention the mistreatment of detainees and prisoners by the police and the prison guards, the poor conditions and overcrowding in the state prisons, as well as the delayed access to legal counsel by detainees and defendants. The report clearly indicates that the country’s prisons and detention centers do not meet international standards, they are in dilapidated condition, and the prisoners are held – as it is stated – in deplorable, dangerous and unhygienic environment, while most of the prisoners are locked in their cells for up to 23 hours a day.

The US State Department report also quotes the report of the Council of Europe’s Committee for the Prevention of Torture which particularly criticizes the treatment of the prisoners and requests that they are not held in the equivalent of solitary confinement.

We remind that His Beatitude Archbishop Jovan of Ohrid and Metropolitan of Skopje, having serious health problems, for one year and five months is being held exactly in such conditions (locked in a cell for 23 hours a day) for which the Council of Europe concludes that they “equal solitary confinement”!

The US State Department report further highlights that the law prohibits arbitrary arrest and detention, but that is not being respected, and the arbitrary arrest and detention remained an open problem. The report states that although the Constitution and the laws provide for an independent judiciary, the government exercised political pressure and intimidation on the judicial branch. Archbishop Jovan of Ohrid in the last ten years is being imprisoned for the sixth time by the mentioned judiciary, against him series of politically rigged court processes are lead, and the last year a great number of monastics and faithful people of the Archbishopric were spectacularly arrested and detained with handcuffs on their hands. Also, through the rigged court processes, in 2012, the period covered by this US State Department report, the state persecution on religious basis has expanded against other Bishops, priests, monastics and faithful of the Orthodox Ohrid Archbishopric.

In regard to the freedom of speech, the US State Department again notes that although the Constitution and the laws provide for freedom of speech and press, the government do not always demonstrate respect for this right in practice, and government pressure on the media is a continuing problem!

The consequences of not respecting the human rights which are guaranteed by the Constitution and the laws of FYROMacedonia, the Orthodox Ohrid Archbishopric and its Prelate, Archbishop Jovan of Ohrid, are suffering for more than one decade. More than one decade in regard to the Orthodox Ohrid Archbishopric through one-sided informing, with very few exceptions, a systematic campaign of hate speech is being conducted.

The torture on religious basis of the members of the Orthodox Ohrid Archbishopric, through the continuous politically motivated imprisonments of Archbishop Jovan of Ohrid, through the court processes against almost all Bishops, against the monastics and the faithful people of the Orthodox Ohrid Archbishopric, as well as through the illegal denial of its registration in the FYROMacedonian courts – continues!

The report is available in full on the following location:

In addition to this information, we are reminding of the following video material:

Source:US State Dept via

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