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Unfavoured media and journalists again targeted for attacks and pressure

September 17, 2023

Journalists and media outlets that report critically on the Government of Serbia and Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić have once again found themselves the target of attacks and pressure, this time around coming also from individuals against whom the state is leading legal proceedings.

Predrag Koluvija, owner of the Jovanjica estate and the chief suspect accused of organising a criminal group that cultivated marijuana, attended the birthday celebrations of decidedly pro-government tabloid newspaper Informer, after which a photo of Koluvija from the celebration appeared on social media. In the photo he is pictured alongside his father, who is sporting a T-shirt with the logos of N1, Danas, NIN and Vreme crossed out, while the back displays the words “Support Jovanjica”.

The same Koluvija and his lawyer, Vladimir Đukanović, accused N1 television journalist Ana Novaković of gathering together citizens at a rally in support of police inspector Milan Isakov, who participated in the uncovering of “Jovanjica”, and ordering when the opposition should insult Koluvija and whistle, despite her discussions relating only to usual communication between a journalist and cameraman.

Dijana Hrkalović, a former state secretary at the Interior Ministry who is being prosecuted for influence peddling, requested a postponement of the hearing in the case that she initiated against investigative journalism portal KRIK, again due to N1 journalist Ana Novaković, who she accuses of attempted lynching.

Furthermore, the Conservative movement “Naši” [Ours} scattered leaflets in the courtyard of N1 television and on the premises of daily newspaper Danas displaying a picture of Kosovo Prime Minister Albin Kurti alongside the inscription “Kurti’s opposition”.