PAGE ::: 1

INFO   :::  Projects > Archives > Promoting a Social Climate Propitious to Transitional Justice and a Culture of... > Text




Public debate within the project "Promoting a Social Climate Propitious to Transitional Justice and Culture of Non-impunity" realized with the assistance of the Norwegian Helsinki Committee for Human Rights

Smederevo, October 25, 2011.

Editor-in-chief of the Helsinki Charger Seska Stanojlovic was the first to address the launch in the local Cultural Center. Speaking of the magazine she reminded that was one of the Committee's most important and longstanding projects realized for years in cooperation with the Norwegian Helsinki Committee. Its analytical contents, competence and social engagement of the authors writing for it, earned the magazine high repute both in Serbia and the region, she said.

For more than a decade, said Ms. Stanojlovic, the Charter has been following Serbia's wavering course towards European Union and supporting the social forces genuinely committed to this goal that are more often than not in the minority. The European Commission's opinion that Serbia should obtain EU candidacy by the end of this year is a major advance in this direction - for, a country's European course becomes irreversible (regardless of a change in the government) once it obtains EU candidacy and a date for the beginning of accession negotiations. This is why, said Ms. Stanojlovic, the conservative, anti-European bloc - with all its power in influence in all spheres - is now on the offensive. Escalation of the crisis in Kosovo's north is a paradigm of their well organized and planned campaign: the crisis is in the service of obstructing Serbia's movement towards Brussels.

In his address Bosko Jaksic, commentator of the Politika daily, focused on the crisis that was "generated" in Kosovo. Serbia's highest officials, its government and the President of the Republic, can no longer control local leaders and other Serb structures in the North. "We've been hostage to Ratko Mladic for long and now we are hostage to four mayors in North Kosovo," he said, adding that one cannot but be under the impression that President Tadic deliberately prolongs the deadlock in the North. Since the election campaign is already in full swing, a resolute move that would put an end to this unsustainable situation hardly plays into the hands of the ruling party's concern for ballots. And yet, Boris Tadic will have to react even before he wants to as further prolongation of the crisis in Kosovo's north seriously jeopardizes Serbia's EU candidacy to be decided on in early December, said Mr. Jaksic.

Historian Latinka Perovic spoke about the longstanding and powerful anti-modern - actually anti-European - thought in Serbia, the thought that has always favored territorial expansion over development. "Serbs have never been happy with the states they had in modern history - there were unhappy with princedom, they were unhappy with kingdom, the same as with the 'first' and the 'second' Yugoslavia." That is why they destroyed the 'second' Yugoslavia in the way they did, she said. Today we are faced with the effects of that historical wander. Serbia is at crossroads. Whether it will opt to Europe that is willing to help it, is hard to tell. However, said Ms. Perovic, the Serbian society is more plural than it might seem: some are genuinely against Europe and want to see Serbia in the East; others advocate European forms (laws, institutions, etc.) but would not change the "inner substance" and they make the current that actually compromises the European idea; and, finally, there is a third bloc, people who are truly committed to social modernization in line with European standards and values, and advocate European integrations. This is a crucial moment for Serbia, the same as the choice it makes will be, concluded Ms. Perovic.



PAGE ::: 1







Copyright * Helsinki Committee for Human Rights in Serbia - 2008

Web Design * Eksperiment