Giving hope to persecuted Christians since 1995
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(Forum 18) No-one has yet been charged for organizing the violence in March, including the destruction of 30 Orthodox
churches. Since 1999, no-one responsible for the destruction of 140 churches has been arrested. There is also some evidence that
churches were looted for the black market before their destruction. Kosovo’s prime ministerial spokesman refused to admit to
Forum 18 News Service that any churches were destroyed before March and said it had not been decided who would protect
churches from further attacks. The protection provided by KFOR was variable, with the French and German contingents being
particularly criticized by the Serbian Orthodox Church. In contrast, other KFOR contingents, such as the Czechs, Italians and
Swedes, risked their troops’ lives to provide protection. Captain Jonas Bengtsson of the Swedish contingent told Forum 18 that “It
is a miracle no Swedish soldier was badly injured,” and commented that “Churches have always been one of the most important
things to protect.” The Swedes have, since the March violence, stepped up protection for churches they are responsible for.