"Authorities seriously worried because of protests"

Radio Free Europe's Most program discussed whether mass civil protests could endanger the rule of Milorad Dodik in the the Serb Republic (RS).

Source: Radio Free Europe
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(screen capture, file)
(screen capture, file)

The participants in Banja Luka were political analyst Tanja Topic and social psychologist Srdjan Puhalo.

"I think the government is seriously concerned about the strengthening of these protests. Previously, all attempts to organize any kind of protest were suppressed at the very start. A tried and tested recipe was used: it was said that the protests were organized from the outside, with the help of centers of power - whether from abroad, whether from the Federation of BiH (the Muslim-Croat entity) and is Soros was often accused. We witnessed the production of countless different revolutions, hot falls, tumultuous springs, and the like. These were all spins used by the government to prevent any public expression of dissatisfaction. In the event of a protest over the murder of David Dragicevic, this obviously did not work out - and my impression is that it makes them quite nervous," Topic said.

Puhalo recalled the protests over the destruction of a city park in Banja Luka in 2012, ahead of local elections.

"The result was a huge loss of votes by the ruling party in Banja Luka. In relation to those protests, Justice for David is a much more serious protest, because the case of David Dragicevic has much more weight than the defense of a city park. On the other hand, the economic situation is much worse than it was six years ago. All this scares the authorities in the RS (the Serb entity). After all, you never know in which direction it can go, or how much the protests will affect public opinion in the RS. There is one more thing that is not talked about much, and that is that because of these protests we have a completely new relationship between Sarajevo and Banja Luka. The two fathers, Darko Dragicevic from Banja Luka and Muriz Memic from Sarajevo, whose son was also killed under unclear circumstances, have united in seeking justice for their sons. They have done more to bring Sarajevo and Banja Luka closer than all non-governmental organizations. And that fact scares the local authorities," Puhalo added.

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