The student activists of the 1 in 5 Million initiative said on Friday that they were not allowing anyone into the Belgrade University Rectorate following statements by which they feel are putting them in danger.
The statement said that the doors to the Rectorate are locked. “The statements by Education Minister Mladen Sarcevic, University School of Languages Dean Ljiljana Markovic and Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic are putting the students blocking the Rectorate in danger,” it said adding that those statements were made “in preparation of a media lynch of the students who are defending the decency and autonomy of the University”.
“Serbian Progressive Party (SNS) officials and cabinet ministers have commented the student demands which were not made to them and are encouraging their followers to repeat the events of Friday, September 13 at the Rectorate when the students were assaulted,” the statement said.
Belgrade University Rector Ivanka Popovic said everything would be done to speed up the process of ruling on the disputed doctoral thesis by Finance Minister Sinisa Mali. Speaking after a joint meeting of the University Senate Council and Student Parliament, she said that the most important thing now is to negotiate with the students in the Rectorate. “They must not come out of there in defeat but as a group which feels that it has achieved at least part of its demands,” she said.
Serbian officials have said that the students’ protest at the Rectorate is political and even that it violates the autonomy of the university.