Belgrade Cultural Association

Belgrade dialogue:

for the constructive relations with Russia

and recognition of will of the people of Crimea

December 6th, 2019, Belgrade, Serbia.

Conference "Belgrade dialogue: for the constructive relations with Russia and recognition of will of the people of Crimea" held on December 6th, 2019 at the conference hall of the "Russian House" in Belgrade, Serbia.

The conference included representatives of the Government of the Republic of Crimea, guests from dozens of countries, representatives of political parties from Serbia & 10 representatives of Belgrade Cultural Association.


Basic themes for discussion:

- Intensification of the struggle of the peace-loving force of the European continent to end the confrontation with Russia;

-  Providing European security, including the full implementation of the Minsk agreements on the
South-East of Ukraine;

- EU rejection of illegal anti-Russian sanctions and artificial restrictions;

-  Termination of the economic, political and humanitarian blockade of Crimea;

- Expansion of European parliamentarians’ and public figures’ contacts with representatives of

-   Development of inter-parliamentary dialogue between the Republic of Crimea and Serbia and others

Belgrade Cultural Association presented two speeches at the Conference. The main speech was: "Culture - language that we all understand / as a way to connect people from Serbia and Crimea. Read more:


Hello, my name is Katarina Singidunum, and I represent the Belgrade Cultural Association.

Last year, on my personal exhibition in Belgrade, people asked me to say a few things about my work. I began with words: Art is a language that we all understand, but we learn to speak whole our lives.
By this occasion, I can be free to replace the word Art with the word Culture, as it has a much broader meaning.

What is common with people of Crimea and people in Serbia?
We found ourselves in a similar situation, we have something that is ours and that is challenged by someone. We know that and deeply feel  with whole our being.
The only thing we fully hold in our hands and which undeniably proves continuity is culture. Through culture, we are constantly affirming our existence in the place that belongs to us. developing as a people and nation, and enlightening and informing the people around us, both close and distant.
The impact of the media is strong. This is something indisputable, which we all know and must admit. Both positive and negative.
In 2010, through the project "The Impact of Civil Society on European Integration in Serbia", I took in an official visit to the city of Belgrade, Ms. Debora Serracchiani, the member of EU Parliament.

Despite the long and very friendly correspondence that preceded it, she landed to the Belgrade airport with a deep prejudice against our country, caused - by the media! Negative story, produced by the media in the west Europe about Serbia was too strong. That made a big prejudice about Serbia among all the people there.

The official visit lasted two days. During those two days, in addition to the conference, we organized a visit to the Serbian medieval monasteries Ravanica and Manasija. On this occasion, I explained to her that many such Serbian monasteries exist in Kosovo, as the center of a Serbian medieval state. I mentioned the 2004 destruction by Albanian people, when the Serbian churches and monasteries in Kosovo and Metohija were organized and savagely destroyed.
 Afterwards, we took her on an organized visit to the “Radinac”, camp for the refugees and displaced persons from Kosovo and Metohija.
 Husband, wife, seven children, they all lived in one small room, around 10 square meters. Without fresh water. Our guests, as well as her entourage, they were all pale, confused.

They asked a woman - so, is there anything that you left for you in Kosovo, did you have anything?

 -We had, said the woman, the house, the property, acres of land, orchard ..

-Well, can you go back there? - asked the Italian lady, our guest.

-No, we cannot, the woman replies, there are some other people living in our house now …
On the way back, our guest was constantly typing a press statement that she placed to the Italian media.

 "I cannot believe that there are people in the heart of Europe who cannot return to their homes," was the statement, which was heard in all Italian media that day.
When she was going home, at the Belgrade airport, with tears in her eyes, she just told us:

 "I'll vote for you"
In 2013, in the framework of the project "1700 Years from the Edict of Milan", organized by the Belgrade Cultural Association, we bring to the conference in Belgrade the top Byzantologists from Peru, Argentina, France and Serbia;
Galo Garces Avalos, Peru; Walter Liberali Martin, Argentina; Remi Terin, France;
It was amazing when I realize that there are young people from the other continent who know more about the history of your country. They werw honored by the invitation and happy for the opportunity to see with their own eyes the culture they have been learning so much about.

"The Beginning of Christianity and Our All civilization is a Byzantine culture, ”said Galoa Garces Avalosa from Peru.
2014 Brazilian-Serbian Friendship Project. Fernando Naviskas, a famous Brazilian fine artist.
I'm sorry we don't have time to see the video now, when he says at the beginning of his exhibition: ".. thank you Belgrade, thank you Serbia, thank you wonderful people". That man will never trust the media anymore. Now, he has his immediate experience, which he is now expanding, as an ambassador of culture.

From 2015 to 2019, numerous artists from all over the world participated in the exhibitions organized by the Belgrade Cultural Association. For instance: Belgrade Biennale, Belgrade Art Salon, cultural meetings, literary evenings, concerts and film projects. Artists from all around the World with artists from Serbia. These are just some of them:

* Tatyana from Russian Federation;
* Gary & Dob from United States;
* Gianluca, Giorgio, Andrea & Antonello from Italy;
* Alex & Elke from Germany;

* Remi from France;
* Jesus & Roger from Spain;
* Ginam & Koo from South Korea;
* Concetta from Belgium;
* Fabio & Fernando from Brazil;
* Alejandro & Walter from Argentina;
* Arce, Donatello & Galo from Peru;
* Alejandro from Chile;
* Phillip & June from South Africa;
* Zita from Poland;
* Garry from Australia;

Many artists from Serbia, who, like myself, have participated in these exhibitions, will not be mentioned individually, but we are very grateful to them for having helped the Belgrade Cultural Association project to promote our culture abroad.
All these people who came to Serbia exchanged their artistic views with us, returned to their countries and told their story about Serbia to their colleagues, friends and many local media from their countries published articles and interviews about these events.
How much have we done? By linear comparison with global media companies, it's small, but looking at the essence, it is significant.
Because, our friends from culture keep repeating their story. And that story is new, fresh and, most importantly, true. Culture cannot be false, it either is or is not.

I'll end with going back to the beginning. We are expanding our culture. Let's not blame people for not knowing - they are victims of their media, there are few people who inform themselves from infrequent sources and think with their heads, but we try to make our truth accessible to as many people as possible through culture.
That is why I suggest that people in Crimea share their experiences with us because we have significant experience in breaking the media blockade with the help of culture.
Dear friends from Russia, welcome, thank you for the opportunity to say this and I hope that these days in Belgrade will remain in your fond memory.

Thank you."

Katarina Singidunum,
Program Director of Belgrade Cultural Association

A friend from Russia

At the formal reception

Katarina Singidunum - speech:


Belgrade dialogue:

for the constructive relations with Russia

and recognition of will of the people of Crimea

Belgrade Cultural Association at the Conference

Board of Directors of the

Belgrade Cultural Association