The leader of the Democratic Party (DS) walked out of a political talk show on the Serbian state TV on Tuesday evening after repeated interruptions by an senior official of the ruling Serbian Progressive Party (SNS).
DS leader Zoran Lutovac tried to speak about the idea of demarcation as a solution to the Kosovo problem, saying that no one, including the SNS, knew what that meant but was interrupted several times by SNS deputy leader Milenko Jovanov who even said at one point that the opposition Alliance for Serbia is an alliance for rape and hanging.The DS is part of that opposition group.
Lutovac walked out of the Upitnik talk show after saying that he was not being allowed to finish a single thought by Jovanov’s constant interruptions during the entire show.
Jovanov was in the news recently for offensive remarks against and opposition MP in the Vojvodina provincial Assembly when he told People’s Party official Borislav Novakovic that he would be wearing a police anklet after a group of opposition MPs unfurled a banner saying Free Media, Free Elections, Free Institutions.
“Given this atmosphere, with a constant re-directing of the discussion outside the framework of topics, with the most direct insults and lies, Lutovac left the studio saying that it would be irresponsible to take part in something that is not a dialogue, whose motives are not to seek answers, which is not a media presentation but an attack on the opposition,” a DS statement said later.
The statement added that Lutovac asked anchor Olivera Jovicevic to stop the interruptions and allow a dialogue which she did not do. Jovicevic told Lutovac just before he walked out that he should “enter into the debate” and that he “is not in the theatre”.
Lutovac was the only opposition alliance politician on the show. Also in the studio were ruling coalition member Movement of Socialists’ General Secretary Djordje Komlenski and Vojislav Seselj, whose Serbian Radical Party is not part of the opposition alliance.