Serbia Urged to Solve New Attack on Journalist

The Association of Journalists, the Anti-corruption Council and the ‘Enough is enough’ movement have demanded that those who recently attacked the investigative journalist Ivan Ninic be brought to justice.

images21

The Association of Journalists of Serbia, UNS, the Independent Association of Journalists of Serbia, NUNS, the Anti-corruption Council and the political movement “Enough is Enough” have called for those who attacked journalist Ivan Ninic to be tracked down as soon as possible.

Ivan Ninic, an associate of the Anti-corruption Council and the anti-corruption portal Pistaljka, was beaten up on August 27 in front of his home by two young men using metal rods. UNS said it was shocked by the attack, calling it a threat to investigative journalism.

“Enough is enough,” led by Sasa Radulovic, called the attack an assault on the fight against corruption and accused figures in the government of being behind it. Ninic told BIRN on Monday that he had narrowed down the circle of likely suspects but would wait for the results of the police investigation.

“I have a pretty good idea who could it be but I’ll wait for a few weeks to see how the investigation will go,” Ninic said. Ninic in March founded an NGO, the Center for the Rule of Law, which plans to launch its own website on investigative stories. He claimed that members of the political elite “felt threatened” by their forthcoming investigative story alleging that state money was transferred to the Socialist Party of Serbia. “It can be assumed that somebody felt threatened because of that,” Ninic said. On the portal Pistaljka, Ninic published about 90 articles in the period from 2009 to 2013.

He also participated in the writing of this year’s Anti-corruption Council’s Annual Report on the ownership structure and control of the media in Serbia as a legal advisor. Attacks on journalists are frequent in Serbia. On August 15, Predrag Blagojevic, editor of Juzne Vesti, was attacked by a police officer.

According to NUNS, 19 attacks have been reported this year, 12 of which were verbal and five physical. Two were attacks on property. Only two were prosecuted. There were 23 attacks on journalists in 2014, of which 11 were verbal, 11 were physical and one was an attack on property. Five cases were prosecuted. There were 23 reported attacks on journalists in 2013, 15 of which were verbal, six physical and two were attacks on property. Only four were processed in court.

BIRN

1 September 2015