PAGE 2/4 ::: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4

INFO   :::  Home - In Focus > In Focus Archiva - PAGE 2 > Serbian Pro-Govt Tabloid Labels Female Activists ‘Spies’


Serbian Pro-Govt Tabloid Labels Female Activists ‘Spies’

Pro-government tabloid Informer has published front-page stories for two consecutive days accusing female Serbian civil rights activists of being spies and passing information about war crimes to Croatia.


Sasa Dragojlo

7 September 2016, BIRN



For two days in a row, the front pages of Informer have showcased Serbian Radical Party leader Vojislav Seselj’s allegations that three female civil rights activists have been conducting espionage on behalf of Croatia and other countries’ foreign intelligence services.

On Tuesday, hardline nationalist Seselj claimed that Sonja Biserko, the head of Helsinki Committee for Human Rights in Serbia, Natasa Kandic, the founder of the Humanitarian Law Centre NGO, and Jelena Milic, the director of the Belgrade Centre for Euro-Atlantic Studies were “the biggest spies” in Serbia.

“Natasa Kandic collects files and confidential data which she delivers to the Croats, on the basis of which they are creating their war crime charges,” Seselj told Informer.

“Milic and Biserko are in charge of subversive activities such as the presenting and spreading of false news and unsettling the public. They are getting serious money from the West, from NATO,” he said.

On Wednesday, under the front-page headline “Total War”, Informer quoted Kandic saying that she has been collecting evidence about war crimes in the former Yugoslavia for years.

But it also quoted Seselj again, this time describing Kandic as “ugly” and “sick”.

Biserko told BIRN that the activists have become the ‘usual suspects’ when it comes to accusations of treason, claiming that the government is using the tabloids as propaganda mouthpieces in an attempt to cover up its own failings.

“These papers are close to the prime minister, and these words were said by a person who was tried for hate speech [Seselj],” Biserko said, also arguing that former Serbian President Slobodan Milosevic used Seselj as a tool to attack his enemies in the same way.

Nationalist media in Serbia have often accused Kandic, Biserko and Milic of being “traitors” and “foreign mercenaries”.

On August 16, Informer published a five-page list of NGOs funded by George Soros’s Open Society Foundations from 2011 until 2014, with a front page headline claiming: “Soros paid 391,940,146 dinars [3.2 million euros] for chaos in Serbia.”

Milic was named on Informer’s list of what it called “Soros’s mercenaries”, after which she was subjected to a series of threats, including death threats.

Pro-government tabloids have published a series of articles this summer claiming that Washington and US-based organisations have been deliberately raising tensions in Serbia in an attempt to destabilise the country and alienate Belgrade from Moscow.

There have also been inflammatory articles about potential threats from Croatia as the relationship between Belgrade and Zagreb has soured.

On August 30, Informer published a front page headline alleging that “Croatia is preparing Storm 2” - a reference to the Croatian Army’s Operation Storm in 1995, which caused a mass exodus of tens of thousands of Serbs from the country.



PAGE 2/4 ::: 1 | 2 | 3 | 4










Copyright * Helsinki Committee for Human Rights in Serbia - 2008

Web Design * Eksperiment