Two Serbian opposition leaders told the press on Thursday that last week’s opposition protest in central Belgrade was a success
Democratic Party (DS) leader Zoran Lutovac told Belgrade daily Blic that the reactions of the authorities showed that the April 13 protest was a success.
“That much attention, comments, statements from the authorities and their media just confirm the fact that the protest was a success,” he said.
Alliance for Serbia (SzS) official Dragan Djilas told this week’s issue of NIN magazine that President Aleksandar Vucic is loosing support by the day but warned that he won’t fall from power just because people gather on the streets.
“Some people expect the authorities to fall when we get together on the streets but that is not realistic. You walk out on the streets to protest when you have no chance of changing the system through institutions. There were almost 40,000 people at the protest (on April 13 in Belgrade), many came in from across Serbia on their own without getting paid,” the Alliance for Serbia (SzS) official said, adding that one of those people was worth more than 100 who are ordered to attend rallies.
Lutovac said that Vucic’s rallies are attended only by what he said are strictly controlled people, adding that this shows the difference between democrat and autocrat.
Djilas called for an explanation of what radicalization would mean. “The people calling for radicalization should say what they mean, standing guard in front of institutions like the presidency? That might happen but we have to be very careful,” Djilas said. Lutovac said that civil disobedience is possible if the authorities reject opposition demands.
Djilas told NIN that he was sure the authorities had been preparing to create incidents at the opposition protest in Belgrade. “Obradovic (Dveri leader), Marko Bastac (mayor of a central Belgrade municipality) and I were approached by police officers who showed us their badges and said there were indications that we were not safe. Each of us had five police officers to guard us,” he said and added that all the cafes around the protest venue were full of pro-authorities activists. According to him, there were no incidents because of the large number of people present.