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Montenegrin government collapses due to ties with Serbian church

Article Author:

The Associated Press

Associated Press

Predrag Milic

PODGORICA, Montenegro (AP) — The Montenegro government filed a scandal early Saturday following a rift over ties with the powerful Serbian Orthodox Church. held a vote of confidence. church.

Parliamentarians ousted the government by a vote of 50 to 1, just weeks after Prime Minister Doritan Abazovic signed an agreement regulating the status of the Serbian Church in Montenegro.

The issue is a sensitive one for many of the tiny Balkan states of 620,000 that split from their much larger neighbor Serbia in 2006. Dominant role and relations with Serbia.

Critics argue that no special arrangements need to be made separately for Serbian churches and other religious groups.

Abazovic described the agreement as a tool for Serbia and Russia to increase their influence in Montenegro amid the war in the United States.

He defends the accord as a way to put the long-standing church controversy on the back burner and focus on other important issues.

It was not immediately clear whether the collapse of the government would lead to the dissolution of parliamentary elections, or whether parties would seek to form a new coalition government. Controversy hinders progress towards integration into the European Union. In 2017, Montenegro defied former ally Russia and became a member of NATO.