Commissioner condemns threats to Serbia’s NGOs

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Source: N1

Brankica Jankovic, Serbia’s Commissioner for Protection of Equality denounced on Friday the threats some NGOs had received and urged state reaction, the Beta news agency reported.

Jankovic said the threats and insults that started on social networks spread to public life and media space, while in recent days they escalated in death threats to the human rights activists and journalists.

“You will all be destroyed,” said a letter to the Belgrade Centre for Security Policy (BCBP) on Wednesday, and the BCBP has said some other civil society organisations received similar letters. The Centre said it reported the threat to the police and that it would file criminal charges against the signatories.“

„The safety and basic human rights and freedoms of those who fight for them must not be imperilled,” Jankovic said in a statement.

But, she added, “that won’t stop by itself. And that’s why all participants in public life must be aware of every single word they say, and media must stop publishing insults and inappropriate qualifications.”

Jankovic also called on the relevant institutions “to prevent the incitement of hatred and violence, stop spreading fear and creating a hostile and offensive environment directed at any individual in our society.”

Earlier in the week, an opposition member to the Parliament and a ruling party official received threats on a social network and via SNS.