News

The Grand Chancellor received the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Serbia

19/10/2021

The postal agreement has been signed

Of great importance in the history of the Order of Malta, the Magistral Villa also boasts an artistic treasure: its church, Santa Maria in Aventino, is the only architectural example by the famed artist and engraver Giovanni Battista Piranesi (1720-1778). In 1764 Piranesi created the square, Piazza dei Cavalieri di Malta, and the Church with highly decorative motifs relating the history and traditions of the Order. The Magistral Villa attracts visitors from far and wide who scale the Aventine Hill to peer through its celebrated ‘Buco della Serratura’; a keyhole framing the dome of St Peter’s Basilica. The Magistral Villa enjoys the right of extraterritoriality.

Rome 19 October 2021 – The Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Serbia Nikola Selaković was received today by the Grand Chancellor Albrecht Boeselager at the Magistral Villa in Rome, one of the Order of Malta’s government offices. The visit takes place on the twentieth anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations – which took place precisely in 2001 – which over the years has given rise to and supported numerous initiatives in the field of medical and social assistance.

The initiatives of the Embassy of the Order of Malta in Serbia consist mainly of the distribution of hot meals, donation of food, clothing and basic necessities to needy families and institutions for the poor. There were also numerous donations of ambulance cars and medical equipment of the latest generation to public and private hospitals. The first donation – as noted by Minister Selaković – dates back to 1885, the year in which the Order donated an ambulance train during the war between the Kingdom of Serbia and the Principality of Bulgaria.

The two key projects of the Embassy of the Order in Serbia, led by the Ambassador Alberto di Luca, are: “Make a WISH to the Order of Malta”, a project that has been supporting many children with severe pathologies allowing delicate and expensive surgical operations and “A hot meal in a cold Winter” – which supports the “Shelter for Children” institute which houses minors, some of them even victims of human trafficking.

Following the pandemic crisis caused by Covid-19, the Order of Malta in Serbia has intensified some of its activities such as the donation of equipment for hospitals: lung ventilators, reusable masks, disinfectants, disposable gloves, and other material for personal protection.

During today’s meeting, the Postal agreement establishing a regular service between Serbia and the Sovereign Order of Malta was also signed.

The Sovereign Military Hospitaller Order of St. John of Jerusalem of Rhodes and of Malta, founded in Jerusalem around the year 1048, is a primary body of international law and a lay Catholic religious order. The mission of the Order is to defend the faith and serve the poor and the sick. Today the Order of Malta operates mainly in the field of medical and social assistance and humanitarian interventions, carrying out its activities in over 120 countries together with its 13,500 members, 80,000 volunteers assisted by over 42,000 doctors, nurses and paramedical auxiliaries. The Order manages hospitals, medical centers, clinics, institutions for the elderly and disabled, centers for the terminally ill, volunteer corps. Malteser International, the special relief agency of the Order of Malta, is always at the forefront of natural disasters and helps to reduce the consequences of armed conflict. The Order is currently engaged in the countries bordering Syria and Iraq to provide relief to the victims of violence. The Italian Relief Corps of the Order of Malta participates in the medical aid to migrants on the boats in the Strait of Sicily, alongside the Italian authorities. The Order of Malta is neutral, impartial and apolitical. It has bilateral diplomatic relations with 110 states, official relations with 6 other states, relations at ambassador level with the European Union. The Order is a permanent observer at the United Nations and its agencies and  has representatives at the main international organizations. Since 1834 the seat of the Government of the Sovereign Order of Malta has been in Rom.

The delegations present at the official visit of the Serbian Foreign Minister to the Grand Chancellor of the Sovereign Order of Malta were composed of: SOVEREIGN ORDER OF MALTA H.E. Albrecht Freiherr von Boeselager – Grand Chancellor, H.E. Ambassador Stefano Ronca – Secretary General for Foreign Affairs, H.E. Alberto di Luca – Ambassador of the Order to the Republic of Serbia, H.E. Daniele Verga – Diplomatic Advisor to the Grand Chancellor, Min. Couns. Enrico dei Conti Floridi – Director of Protocol of the Grand Magistry, Mr. Ivo Graziani – Chief of Cabinet to the Grand Hospitaller, Mr. Eugenio Ajroldi – Director of the Communications Office, Mrs. Barbara Vitali – Diplomatic Desk Officer – Foreign Affairs Dept. REPUBLIC OF SERBIA H.E. Nikola Selaković – Minister of Foreign Affairs, H.E. Amb. Sima Avramović – Ambassador to the Sovereign Order of Malta, Mr. Ivan Jakšić – Special Advisor to the Minister, Mr. Miloš Čavić – Chief of Department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Srdjan Miljković – First Counsellor of the Embassy of Serbia to the Order, Stefan Stanković – Chief of the Ceremonial Office of the Protocol Office at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs