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The fact that Montenegro’s authorities have joined anti-Russian sanctions is sheer madness, Metropolitan Amfilohije of Montenegro and the Littoral said in an interview with TASS on Monday.
"The current Montenegrin authorities were born in the Communist-era Tito’s [ideological] matrix [the policy pursued under Josip Broz Tito, the first President of Yugoslavia - TASS], which caused a substantial rift in society. The successors of that matrix were the first in Montenegro’s history to impose sanctions on Russia, which is utter insanity and denial of reality. How can these sanctions harm Russia? They only harm us and pose a threat to Montenegro’s very existence," he stated.
"What does Montenegro build its future on? A deep rift, endless promises from those who bombed us in 1999, NATO, which they made us part of. This is sheer madness, but what we can do? These are the times we live in," remarked one of the most influential bishops in the Serbian Orthodox Church.
Montenegro imposed anti-Russian sanctions in May 2014, taking its cue from the EU member-states, and later on extended them more than once. In 2015, Russia slapped tit-for-tat sanctions on Montenegrin politicians, notifying the country’s Foreign Ministry about the move.
On June 5, 2017, Montenegro formally joined NATO becoming its 29th member. On April 28, the country’s parliament voted for its accession to the alliance. Since the opposition boycotted the meeting, all the 46 participants voted in favor of joining NATO. No referendum on the issue was held in the country.