Solving murders crucial for freedom of journalism
Commission for Investigating Murders of Journalists regards that revealing those who ordered the murders of journalists and the executioners is crucial for the freedom of journalism
The Government of the Republic of Serbia had established Commission a year ago, on the initiative of journalists, with the aim of determining the reasons for not revealing the executioners and possible masterminds of the murders of journalists Slavko Curuvija, Milan Pantic, Dada Vujasinovic and media workers of RTS during air raids in Serbia.
Apart from the journalists, representatives of the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Security Information Agency took part in the work of the Commission, while with the decision of Police Director, work groups were established for every case involved. Prosecutor's Office for Organized Crime was in charge of the investigation of the murder of Slavko Curuvija, as the first prosecution investigation, while the Ministry of Internal Affairs and Security Information Agency acted upon the directions and requests of this Prosecutor's Office.
Commission endeavored to integrate overall documentation that was scattered throughout different institutions. Joint work of the Prosecutor's Office, Ministry of Internal Affairs, and Security Information Agency, with the support of the Bureau for coordination of the work of the security agencies, especially of the Secretary for National Security and First Deputy Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic, had gradually created positive atmosphere and focus in investigation.
The support of the journalists and the media, and especially journalistic investigations, had largely contributed to the positive results of the investigation. It could be said that established synergy of all the mentioned institutions and actors had made it possible to gather enough evidence for issuing the indictment.
Commission underlines that it is very important to reveal all political murders, as it is impossible to build legal state founded on unresolved crimes, especially the crimes committed on behalf of the state or patriotism. Fighting impunity of the murders of journalists is global, and establishing the Commission for investigating murders of journalists in Serbia is a unique project that aims at making a role model that will help in investigating every single murder, as punishing every murderer and mastermind of the murders is the most efficient way to prevent violence against journalists - watchdogs of public interest who should offer timely information significant to the citizens, but also to have effect on the control of the government.
Unpunished crimes, especially those that are committed by the state institutions, only call for new violence, threats, endangerment of the safety of journalists. This is why it is crucial for the whole this process to become integral part of the instruments of the rule of law and commitment of every politician and every politics. In this way, potential new murders of journalists will be prevented as well as the need for the police to protect safety of journalists for years.
Commission will continue to offer support to the work of institutions on this particular case, but also on other cases - the murders of journalists Milan Pantic, Dada Vujasinovic and media workers of RTS.