National Convention: Institutions need to urgently respond to threats and attacks on activists
The National Convention on the European Union organized a media conference following the frequent attacks on activists and civil society organizations.
Participants addressed the lack of reaction coming from the relevant institutions to the threats and attacks faced by the Youth Initiative for Human Rights and the Krokodil organization. These organizations became the subject of an intimidation campaign after the publically announced civil action to clean the lawn and the facade in the Mitićeva rupa park. At the same time that action was a reminder of the initiative to name the park after Dušan Jovanović, the murdered boy of Roma nationality.
The National Convention strongly condemns intimidation and threats to activists, provides support to civil society organizations that fight daily to strengthen social dialogue and exchange of opinions, and condemns any form of extremism as a way to convey messages. At the same time, National Convention calls on the institutions to contribute to reducing social tensions. The institutions must act in line with their constitutional and legal competencies. The National Convention invites the highest state officials and other influential social actors to make a public decision in the same way and, in this way, contribute to the reduction of polarization and violence in society.
This is particularly important considering that we are in a year of importance for the dialogue between Belgrade and Pristina. The dialogue on such an important national issue must be conducted in a way to include all actors and citizens in a sensible and civilized manner. Violence and polarization cannot contribute to reaching an acceptable solution.
In the days following the conference, the Ministry for European Integration and the Ministry for Human and Minority Rights and Social Dialogue condemned the attacks on activists.