The YIHR calls on the institutions both to take action and react – take action for the rule of law and respect for European values, and react against hooligans and war criminals.
Question for the Municipality of Vracar, the City of Belgrade, the Ministry of Internal Affairs, the Government of the Republic of Serbia, the President of Serbia is – when will you enable the removal of the illegal “mural” of Ratko Mladic in Njegoseva Street?
The alliance of state institutions, police and hooligans has been successfully guarding the “mural” of a war criminal Ratko Mladic in Njegoseva street for 15 days.
Instead of supporting the residents of Njegoševa street to remove the “mural” based on the decision of the municipal inspection – the state authorities enabled the hooligans to establish authority at that crossroads, determine who can and who cannot pass, who can take photos or stop, and additionally illegally paint two more portraits on facades – including another war criminal – Draža Mihajlović. Also, hooligan groups are creating communal disorder in Vracar and disturbing the public order and peace of the residents of the surrounding streets.
We remind you that the Ministry of Internal Affairs, first by banning the gathering of the Youth Initiative for Human Rights, and then by arresting activists Aida Ćorović and Jelena Jaćimović, and then by sending a police brigade in full anti-demonstrations equipment on November 9 – saved Ratko Mladic’s “mural” from removal.
As early as November 10, until today, the job of protecting the mural is being taken over by a group of hooligans who stand guard day and night, with the intention to cause fear and unrest among residents, neighbors and passers-by. Twenty-four hours a day, in smaller or larger groups, young men in shifts provide protection to a painted war criminal. Just as the state has protected him from arrest and extradition to The Hague tribunal for years.
The whole democratic world reacted and asked Serbian institutions to ensure the removal of the “mural” – representatives of the United Nations, the European Commission, the European Parliament, the Council of Europe, the United States – all sent the same message – it is not normal to celebrate a war criminal and violate laws and right and freedoms of citizens in the process.
Citizens also reacted – spontaneous actions of destroying graffiti and murals to Mladic and other criminals happen every day throughout Serbia.
Police and prosecutors have been silent for weeks. There is no information on who followed the Women in Black and forcibly stole their banner and then publicly set it on fire in the middle of Belgrade, or those who twice vandalized the YIHR’s office in the city center – despite surveillance camera footage and reports of threats just before the attacks.
There is also no information on who was prosecuted for planning the attack on the assembly on November 9, which was the justification for banning the assembly. In the media, President Vučić spoke about the fact that Đorđe Prelić led or should have led the attack on peace activists, which is certainly worrying, considering that he has just served part of the sentence for the murder of a French football fan Taton, also as part of a hooligan group. If that information is correct, is it normal for any legal action to be taken against two activists for throwing three eggs on the wall, and no action is being taken against Prelić, his followers or those who ordered it.
President Vučić and his ministers accuse us that “at this important moment, we want to send a bad image from Serbia to the world.” We have said it countless times, now they have said it from the most important addresses of the democratic world – the worst picture that can be sent from Serbia is the picture of Ratko Mladic.
Remove the mural, stop denying the genocide in Srebrenica.
That is a picture of Serbia that the world will respect and appreciate.