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Protests in Serbia Archive
First violence reported in Belgrade

Dec. 24

Peter Arnett (CNN) reporting from Belgrade at 14:00 Belgrade time (11:00 GMT) saw that a from a group of SPS counter protesters from Novi Sad a man came forward with a gun and shot an opposition demonstrator in the head. Peter Arnett believes the man died at the spot. The attacker disappeared in the crowd. He also reports there was no police at the spot.
CNN also reports the opposition is considering to cancel today's demonstration and Vuk Draskovic earlier at 12:00 (11:00 GMT) warned the opposition demonstrators that the SPS demonstrators may be armed.

Paul Wood on BBC World Service reported at 14:18 (13:18 GMT) that 2 shots were fired near the headquarters of the Serbian Renewal Movement and someone was taken away in an ambulance. He reports police at the spot tried to calm demonstrators.
In an interview on BCC World Service Vuk Draskovic said the opposition demonstrations would NOT be cancelled.

[It seems CNN and BBC World Service were reporting on separate incidents.]

At 15:12 on BBC World (TV) Paul Wood added that there are no attempts by police to keep opposition and SPS demonstrators apart and streets fights are escalating.

At 16:00 (15:00 GMT) Steve Harrigan (CNN) reported the police is intervening and the opposition demostrators are pulling back.
According to him, the confrontation started with throwing eggs at each other, which escalated in to street fights, using a.o. the sticks of the boards the SPS demonstrators carried.
Peter Arnett reported in the same broadcast that the man who was shot in the head is in critical condition [not dead as reported earlier].

At 17:00 (16:00 GMT) Dutch RTL4 TV reported there are 350,000 demonstrators in Belgrade, from which 50,000 are pro-Milosevic demonstrators. The police is now driving back the opposition demonstrators. In an interview an opposition leader said the SPS demonstration is irresponsible, because the people taking part are ignorant about events in Belgrade last weeks.

Boyd Noorda
Socia Media, The Hague

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