Bosnia's Freemasons in "ethnically motivated fistfight"
Professor and member of the Olympic Committee of Bosnia-Herzegovina Izet Radjo has denied taking part in a fight in downtown Sarajevo.Source: B92, Sputnik
The incident reportedly occurred during the annual meeting of the Grand Lodge of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
Radjo told the website of Sarajevo-based Dnevni Avaz newspaper that he "had no comment" when it came to "the article, and the claims of journalists from some media outlets, because the article was made up."
"I have been taken aback by these fabrications, and I'm not even in Bosnia-Herzegovina at the moment," he said.
Previously, Bijeljina-based news agency SRNA reported that the fight occurred "due to the long-standing inter-ethnic tensions in the Great Masonic Lodge" - whose head, Edvin Dervisevic, allegedly tried to calm the situation and stop the incident, but in the process bore the brunt of the incident.
The result, according to the same source, were "several injured brothers" and expensive cars smashed with clubs and stones - as well as "the definitive disintegration of the masonic brotherhood of Bosnia-Herzegovina, that in this way, instead of tolerance and cosmopolitanism, demonstrated that Bosnia-Herzegovina is an 'impossible and abnormal' state."
Sputnik quoted the agency as reporting that the incident started near Nahorevska Street in Sarajevo "and then moved to the area around the building where the Freemasons met."
Banja Luka-based Nezavisne Novine said that Izet Radjo, Professor-Doctor Edib Delic, and Tuzla Clinical Center doctor Adi Rifatbegovic - all high ranking officials of the Bosniak (Muslim) SDA party - took part in fight on one side, while "a group of Serbs and Croats" was on the other.
The fight that moved from the building onto the street was stopped by the security assigned to the villa of Lars-Gunnar Wigemark, head of the EU Delegation in Bosnia-Herzegovina, who was at that time hosting a reception for foreign diplomats posted in the country.
In a statement for Nezavisne Novine, Rifatbegovic, SDA's candidate for the mayor of Tuzla, also denied that he took part in the incident, saying, "I have nothing to do with that event."