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Orthodox bishop remanded in custody in Macedonia
      Skopje, January 13, 2004 - The bishop at the centre of a row between the Serbian and Macedonian Orthodox Churches has been detained by police in Macedonia for the second time in just two days.

Bishop Zoran Vraniskovski, or Bishop Jovan, was arrested late this afternoon and remanded in custody for 30 days. He had earlier been released having spent 24 hours in police custody.

He was first picked up this weekend with 11 other people while holding a religious service in his father’s apartment in the Macedonian town of Bitolj, and later charged with disseminating “national, racial and religious hatred.”

The move came after Bishop Jovan announced that the Ohrid archdiocese, which he was appointed to lead last year by the head of the Serbian Orthodox Church, had reached a deal with four Macedonian monasteries on canonical unity.

The Macedonian Church, which does not recognise the Ohrid archdiocese, immediately dismissed the 30 monks of the four monasteries.

The heads of the Macedonian Orthodox Church have called a meeting for tomorrow.



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