Class of March 2023 takes oath of enlistment, Minister Vučević attends
Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defence Miloš Vučević attended the oath-taking ceremony held at the “Field Marshal Živojin Mišić“ barracks in Valjevo today. Soldiers of the March 2023 intake and students of the Reserve Officers’ Course took the oath of enlistment.
At the beginning of his address, Minister Vučević congratulated the soldiers and course participants on taking the oath of enlistment and greeted them on behalf of the President of the Republic and Supreme Commander of the Serbian Armed Forces, Aleksandar Vučić, the Ministry of Defence and the Serbian Armed Forces. As he said, the soldiers and course participants gave their “strong, big and decisive” word today.
- The oath you took today was heard by the citizens of the Republic of Serbia, its ancestors and descendants. Both the earth and sky. You gave your word to your homeland and people. And what is the homeland but thought, faith and love? Those categories are timeless, eternal and written in the hearts of each of us, said the Minister of Defence and congratulated everyone on being honourable and ready to defend our people, our history, tradition, customs and all the values cherished by our ancestors and our descendants.
According to Minister Vučević, military oath has a special significance in the lives of those who have taken it.
- By giving our word, by making a pledge of honour driven by our love for the homeland, we join military ranks, where we share good and bad, make friends for life, mature and toughen, take responsibility for ourselves and others, learn how to act in times of crisis and in dangerous situations, to value justice and freedom. The only thing that fills one with greater pride than taking the oath oneself, is attending one’s child’s oath-taking ceremony. That is why I want to congratulate the parents of our soldiers from the bottom of my heart and thank them on behalf of the Republic of Serbia for raising their sons and daughters in the spirit of patriotism, said the Minister of Defence.
According to him, all members of the Ministry of Defence and the Serbian Armed Forces, including himself, feel great respect for everyone who took the oath today.
Minister Vučević also referred to today's date 24 years ago, when "the ominous shadow of the air force of the strongest military alliance that has ever existed loomed over Serbia".
- Aggression - illegal and immoral. Nineteen of the world’s most powerful countries attacked and dropped 22,000 tons of bombs on our people. In the most unjust war that has ever been fought, our people showed that they were worthy descendants of their honourable ancestors, and our military managed to preserve its combat potentials. The soldiers who were doing their military service at the time deserve great credit for that. Their courage, loyalty, self-sacrifice, discipline and love for their homeland were nothing more than the fulfilment of the pledge they had made, Minister Vučević said.
According to him, today we are building partnerships and friendships wishing for peace and prosperity in our homeland.
- Today, we are creating the conditions for equipping and modernizing our military, which was inconceivable until a few years ago. Today, we are improving the living standards of our soldiers and officers and their families, knowing that people are our most valuable asset. We have promised to you that we will have the interests of our people and homeland at heart and our vital interests are peace and freedom, which we will achieve using all our knowledge and skills, the Minister of Defence said.
Citing the famous Field Marshal Živojin Mišić, who said that "the more educated and morally strong a nation is and the more it cherishes domestic virtues and personal and family dignity, the more it will feel its national pride and will be insulted and upset by any hostile attack on its personal and national rights. Such a people will always rush headlong to their flag and gather under it, ready to heroically fight for their national rights, when their homeland asks them to do so," Minister Vučević said that we were building such armed forces today, preserving peace and freedom.
- Dear soldiers, be proud of your oath and always remember the precious moment you took it. And you took it in the barracks that bears the name of the most gifted among Serbian field marshals, in Valjevo, a Serbian town that keeps alive the memory of bloody battles and brilliant victories won in the mountains surrounding it. And those mountains are God-given monuments to those who, like you, loved and protected Serbia. Long live the Serbian Armed Forces! Long live Serbia, the Minister of Defence concluded.
The ceremony was attended by the commander of the Training Command, Major General Željko Petrović, representatives of the Ministry of Defence and the Serbian Armed Forces, local self-government, the Ministry of the Interior, religious communities, as well as the families and friends of the soldiers and the course participants. The commander of Valjevo’s Second Training Centre, Colonel Saša Stojiljković, commanded the ceremony.
Brother and sister Biljana and Nemanja Savić from Kosovo and Metohija are doing their military service together. They say that they made the decision unanimously at the same time.
- I was driven by my love of the uniform and the honour of serving the homeland. Military life is something that cannot be described and must be experienced, said Biljana. On the other hand, her brother says that he has wanted be a soldier since childhood.
- It is an honour to serve my country, because I love my country and my people. I hope to join the military once I complete my military service, said Nemanja.
Bogdan Bezbradica from Pančevo is in his final year at the Faculty of Orthodox Theology in Belgrade and he wishes to become a military priest.
- I became interested in that profession due to my love for the homeland and the uniform and the desire to get employment. I urge young people to take up this challenge, said Bezbradica.
Dimitrije Milovanov from Sombor is a dentist, and now he attends the Reserve Officers’ Course.
- I decided to take this step mainly for patriotic reasons and in order to wear the honourable officer's uniform of our glorious ancestors. I would recommend this course to all young people who wish to improve their knowledge, gain new experience and acquire new habits, Milovanov said.