Commission: New warrants for "disobedient" journalists
The Commission Investigating Murders of Journalists is deeply disturbed by the latest Trial Chamber's decisions in the trial for the murder of Slavko Curuvija.Source: B92
A press release signed by the Commission's president, Veran Matic, added that these developments are seen as a continuation of the bad conduct of this procedure, which is especially noticeable when it comes to avoiding presenting all evidence.
The Commission recalls that November 2 is International Day to End Impunity for Crimes Against Journalists.
It is deeply concerning that we are entering the finale of a historical process against people charged with the murder of Slavko Curuvija at a time when the state-owned newspaper (Ilustrovana Politika. "Illustrate Politic") publishes new warrants for disobedient journalists. The scandalous editorial decision to publish a picture of raging dogs on the front page, identified inside the magazine with a number of news rooms in Serbia, would be monstrous even if the article had not been signed by the former editor of Politika Ekspres. It is the newspaper that declared Slavko Curuvija the enemy of the state only days before he was to be shot dead in front of his house, like a dog, the statemented said.
Twenty years later, Djordje Martic uses the same threatening tone as he talks about his colleagues with contempt and gloat over their fate. Such a text in the state-owned magazine has left all citizens who believed that the state would not kill journalists and that the killings would not be justified by the state's interest unsettled. This second part is as important as the first one.
For this reason, the Commission welcomes the fact that the president of Serbia has condemned this text. Aleksandar Vucic thus remedied any suspicion that the state, through state-owned media, is "winking" to judges in the Curuvija case or suggesting that, when disobedient journalists are concerned, nothing has changed here. This is all the more important, since, before Aleksandar Vucic, no government had the political will to investigate and prosecute the murder of Slavko Curuvija. Ilustrovana Politika this week compromised all previous efforts of Serbian society and the state so that crimes against journalists don't remain unpunished. It is our fear that the trial chamber in the case of Curuvija does not do the same, as we have already warned, the Commission said.
Đorđe Martic testified in court that the article "Curuvija welcomed the (NATO) bombs" was created and published on instructions that came "from above." We urge the competent authorities to review the safety of all journalists targeted by Djordje Martic, as well as those who are in a similar way threatened, all the more so since we are witnessing that violence against journalists is on the rise in the region, as well as around the world, the statemented concluded.