Editors of media outlets dealing with Kosovo threatened, prosecution fails to react for months

September 1, 2018

Almost five months after Ljiljana Stojanović, editor of regional news agency Jug Press from Leskovac, received a message in which she was threatened with “brutal persecution”, there has been no progress whatsoever in the investigation.

It was back on 4th April, during the roundtable event “Dialogue on Kosovo and the South of Serbia” in the American Corner of the Vranje City Library, that she received an instant SMS message from an unknown telephone number saying that the panel discussion was happening in “the institution of occupation”, with the support of the “Occupiers Foundation for an open society”, and that “there can be no democratic dialogue on the independence of so-called Kosovo, and the exponents of such stances should be brutally persecuted, not only verbally, if not institutionally, then non-institutionally”.

Stojannović, whose media outlet also covers events in Kosovo and the municipalities of southern Serbia that are home to the majority of the country’s Albanian population, reported the threat to the police.

Despite promises from representatives of the state who formed – together with journalists’ associations – the Working Group for the Safety of Journalists that they would react urgently in cases of threats, Stojanović was only invited to provide a statement on this case two months after the threat was made.

Stojanović says that prosecution services asked her on that occasion why she hadn’t personally called the number used to make the threat against her.