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The second public debate within the project "Helsinki Charter: Promoting Serbia's Europeanization" realized with the assistance of
the Norwegian Helsinki Committee for Human Rights

Novi Sad, May 7, 2010.

The public debate launching the latest double issue of the Helsinki Charter, No. 137-138 (March-April 2010) published under the headline "30 Years Since Tito's Death" took place in the premises of Independent Journalists' Association of Vojvodina. In her opening address, editor-in-chief Seska Stanojlovic spoke about the magazine's editorial policy focusing, in addition to the issue of facing the recent past, Euro-Atlantic integrations. And only logically in that context, the need for Serbia's Europeanization. Referring to Vojvodina as "the most European" part of Serbia, Ms. Stanojlovic reminded that the Helsinki Charter has been promoting Vojvodina's autonomy and the province's right to distribute its own resources and potential.

Economist and author Vladimir Gligorov was critical about the present government's wavering movement towards the European Union. As a rule, he said, after each step in the right direction comes some "new blockade and another halt." According to Gligorov, "Europeans' decreasing enthusiasm for having new countries in the membership of the EU" manifest in particular after the debtor crisis exploded in Greece hardly plays into the hands of Serbia.

Economic journalist Dimitrije Boarov put an emphasis on some fresh advances in the society and economy. In his view, most significant of all is the tendency towards decentralization, regardless of the fact that centralism, as an ineffective system, collapsed inwardly. He also spoke about the progress made in the domain of information technology - actually, as he put it, this is a revolution in the case of Serbia that nowadays has nine million cell phone users and 37 percent of families with access to Internet.

President of the Independent Journalists' Association of Vojvodina Dinko Gruhonjic pointed out the difference the magazines such as the Helsinki Charter were making at Serbia's "bleak, media scene." The project itself, along with the Helsinki Committee's overall publishing activity, is "a capital endeavor," he said.

Participants in the public debate seized the occasion of the presence of two economic experts to pose questions that mostly dealt with the possibility for the "Greek scenario's" spillover to Serbia and beyond, including, say, to Portugal and Spain.











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