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Un nouveau sondage d’opinion porte sur les questions religieuses

  • November 2023

The Centre for Civic Education (CCE) in collaboration with the DAMAR Institute conducted a public opinion research on relations between Montenegro and Serbia, as part of a joint project between the CCE and the Regional Academy for Democratic Development (ADD), with the support of the Embassy of Switzerland.

Among others, the research covered identity issues and religious issues.

The findings show that “nearly two-fifths (39.6%) of citizens believe that the Montenegrin Church should be autocephalous, about a quarter (25.3%) hold the opposite opinion, while a significant number (35.1%) is undecided on this issue, which may indicate a lack of information or different interpretations of historical events.”

When it comes to “the possible autonomy for the Metropolitanate of Montenegro and the Littoral (MML) within the SOC (Serbian Orthodox Church)”, research shows the following : “About one-fifth believes that the MML should have autonomy within the SOC, but a similar percentage is against such an idea. Approximately 16.6% are undecided, and almost 15% believe that the MML already has its autonomy. The largest percentage (26%) does not have a clear stance on this issue. Regarding the consequences of possible autonomy for the MML within the SOC, about a quarter of respondents believe it would have no significant impact, or that autonomy for the MML could improve Montenegrins’ attitudes towards the SOC, while about 15% believe that such a decision could alienate Serbs in Montenegro. However, the largest percentage of respondents (34.8%) cannot determine the consequences of such a decision”.

Furthermore, “the majority of 43% believe that the SOC influences the internal political situation in Montenegro, while 28% do not believe that the SOC has a significant impact on the country’s political affairs, with almost a third having an undefined stance on this issue”.

The research also shows that “about 22.5% believe that church property should belong to the SOC, 16% opt for the MML, and 21% for MOC. It is significant to note that 25% of respondents believe that church property should be in the ownership of the state of Montenegro”, while “about a fifth do not have an opinion on this issue.”
Findings show division in “the perception of the relationship between the Serbian Orthodox Church and the state of Serbia, with about a quarter of respondents (25.1%) believing that the SOC is an integral part of the state of Serbia, i.e., they believe that the SOC collaborates with the state but maintains its autonomy (24.5%)”, while “a smaller number (18.7%) believes that the SOC operates independently of the state of Serbia”, but “the largest percentage of respondents (31.7%) cannot decide on this matter.”

Finally, “over two-fifths (44%) of citizens state that they are not familiar with the content of the Fundamental Agreement signed between the Government of Montenegro and the SOC, while about a quarter (25.3%) claim to be familiar with it, and less than a third (30.8%) assert that they are partially informed about the content of that agreement”.

Source : Damar Institute, Public opinion research on the relations between Montenegro and Serbia, November 2023.

D 8 novembre 2023    ANikola B. Šaranović

CNRS Unistra Dres Gsrl

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