New protest held in Belgrade

A protest against violence dubbed "1 of 5 million" was held on Saturday in Belgrade without incidents, with the next to be held on December 29.

Source: B92, Beta, Tanjug

The organizers announced that between 35,000 and 40,000 people took part, but Interior Minister Nebojsa Stefanovic later cited police estimates that said 5,000 protesters attended the rally.

The protest opened with a moment of silence to honor the victims of a collision between a bus and a train in southern Serbia on Friday.

The protests in central Belgrade started after an opposition politician, Serbia's Left leader Borko Stefanovic and two other activists, came attack in Krusevac.

Actor Branislav Trifunovic, cartoonist Dusan Petricic and Zig website journalist Milan Jovanovic spoke before the march.

Trifunovic "addressed" President Aleksandar Vucic with the message that the protest had gathered many people and that they would be even more numerous.

"We have been counted by those buying diplomas, using our money to buy New Year decorations, television stations...," Trifunovic said, and called on Vucic "to listen to the people, who have something to say to him."


He said he would not vote in elections, and read out academician Ljubomir Simovic's letter of support.

Petricic said the ruling party has "killed" education, judiciary, health, culture, art, and parliament.

Jovanovic said that he did not belong to any party, but decided to protest because he was "an ordinary citizen who sees what is wrong in the common home."

The journalist, who was recently attacked, said he almost died because he publicly pointed out to the crime and corruption in the municipality where he lives. The participants then went on a protest walk past the public broadcaster RTS and the Serbian government buildings.

Among those gathered were opposition politicians Vuk Jeremic and Sanda Raskovic-Ivic, president and vice president of People's Party.

Some participants carried rainbow flags, and a banner reading, "Until everyone is free nobody is free."

The first protest was held under the slogan"End Bloody shirts" on December 8, followed by another one on December 15, titled "Let's Count Ourselves," in response to Vucic's statement that he would not accept the demands of the protesters even if they were five million strong.


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