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Protests in Serbia Archive
Odraz B92 Daily News Service

    ODRAZ B92, Belgrade                             Daily News Service
    Odraz B92 vesti (by 7 PM), January 6, 1997

    e-mail: beograd@siicom.com      URL: http://www.siicom.com/odrazb/
            odrazb92@b92.opennet.org     http://www.siicom.com/b92/
    All texts are Copyright 1997 Radio B92. ALL RIGHTS RESERVED.

    NEWS BY 7 PM


    The distribution of presents to the children of Belgrade began in
    Republic Square at 6 p.m. this evening, and is to be followed by a
    special Orthodox Christmas Eve arts program for children.


    On behalf of the Church Council and the Brethren of Hilandar, head
    of the monastery of Hilandar, Archbishop Mojsije Zarkovic sent a
    Christmas greeting to the students of Serbia today. ``From the
    ancient monastery of Hilandar and the Holy Mount of Aton, we greet
    you with the proclamation, 'Christ is born!'  May this Good News
    come to you, also, the spiritually awakening youth of Serbia, and
    to those who call to the eternal Christ with open hearts in the
    capital and all across Serbia. Christ was hidden from your eyes
    and souls for over half a century by the forces of darkness,''
    said the message to ``the youth of Serbia: the hope, the
    conscience and the future of its people.''

    ``True power comes from above. Your young, awakened hearts know
    this to be true, because they feel today that the power [you have]
    is blessed from above. Neither hatred, nor police cordons, neither
    the state-media and the ignorance induced by them, nor all those
    earthly powers, none has been able to harm you for days and
    weeks,'' says the message. ``Keep up your struggle with the sword
    of peace in your hand.

    We wish you 'Peace and Salvation!' as we do each other in our
    daily greeting among us, the monks of Hilandar...  Let us salute
    you with 'God's Peace -- Christ is born!'' concludes the
    Archbishop's message.


    Spokesman for the Student Protest 96/97, Dusan Vasiljevic said
    today that Serbian Interior Minister Zoran Sokolovic emphasized in
    their meeting this afternoon that the police will uphold the law,
    as they have done so far. A student delegation paid a visit to the
    minister earlier today.

    ``Our meeting with the minister cannot be compared to the talk we
    had with general Perisic. Mr. Sokolovic did not receive our
    arguments with favor,'' said Vasiljevic. He added the minister
    claimed he knows nothing of the beatings of protesters during the
    last few weeks of demonstrations. The spokesman for the Student
    Protest 96/97 confirmed that the delegation informed the minister
    of their intention to radicalize their protest methods. The
    minister's response was that he, for his part, must abide by the
    laws of the country.

    ``We did not discuss the issue of his resignation, for we came to
    look into the problem of the conditions for future student
    protests. We stressed that our protests have been peaceful so far
    and that we intend to keep things that way, at which the minister
    repeated for the umpteenth time that he must abide by and uphold
    the law,'' stressed Vasiljevic. Minister Sokolovic told them that
    ``all the police forces of the world must be paying tribute to the
    Serbian police for its successful monitoring of the rallies.''
    ``Sokolovic remarked that so far not a single demonstration has
    been prevented, but did not reply when asked why the police let
    the student demonstrations go on for 32 days and then started
    blocking them,'' said Vasiljevic.

    Commenting on the press release signed by the information service
    of the Yugoslav Army and jointly made public by the army and the
    student delegation, Vasiljevic pointed out that anyone who can
    read between the lines could see what the implied solution for
    Yugoslavia's re-entry in the international community is.

    Today's student gathering is set for 9 p.m. The students are to go
    to the Church of St. Sava, where they are expected to be addressed
    by Serbian Patriarch Pavle and presented with the Christmas
    message from the monastery of Hilandar. ``There will be no
    gathering on Christmas, January 7, for this is a festivity
    traditionally celebrated with one's family,'' explained


    Serbian Patriarch His Holiness Pavle, officiated at an afternoon
    service in the Church of Resurrection in Belgrade, celebrating the
    Orthodox Christmas Eve today. Tonight at 10, he will light the
    traditional Yule Log in front of the Church of St. Sava, in the
    Belgrade neighborhood of Vracar. He is expected to address the
    gathering of citizens planned for this evening, with Zajedno
    supporters and UofB students among them. The students and the
    supporters of Zajedno are to hold a joint walk to the church from
    the city center.


    German Foreign Minister Klaus Kinkel demanded today that Serbian
    President Milosevic acknowledge the opposition victory in the
    local elections in 14 towns and municipalities across Serbia.
    Reuters reports that Kinkel warned Milosevic that a refusal by the
    Socialist Party of Serbia to acknowledge their defeat in all the
    large cities, including Belgrade, could result in further
    isolation of Yugoslavia from Europe, reports FoNet.


    The coalition Zajedno stated today that they have uncovered the
    identities of both those who ordered and those who carried out the
    attack on the citizens in downtown Belgrade on December 27, 1996.
    ``The Serbian Interior Ministry forces ordered that the attacks be
    carried out by a special anti-terrorist squad, whose members wear
    black as well as blue uniforms and plainclothes, as was the case
    on December 27,'' said Zajedno's statement today, adding that
    court action will be launched against Interior Minister Zoran
    Sokolovic, Assistant Minister for Public Security, Radovan
    Stojicic and Interior Ministry forces general Radoljub Djordjevic,
    the men who ordered the action. Legal suits will be also brought
    against Special Forces commander, Zivko Trajkovic, and commander
    of a special anti-terrorist squad stationed in Batajnica, Zoran
    Simovic, as well as several others who were identified by
    witnesses from video recordings and photographs of the December 27


    Some 5,000 students turned out in front of the University of Nis,
    carrying Yule logs to celebrate the Orthodox Christmas Eve today.
    This morning, trustees of the monastery of Hilandar brought
    presents for the students from the monastery: the traditional Yule
    log, wine, flat-bread, honey, oil, candles and olive branches,
    together with the greetings and a blessing from the Hilandar
    monks. The students were read a Christmas message received from
    the monastery. After the gathering, the students set out for a
    protest march, led by a group carrying the presents from Hilandar.
    The march ended just before 5 p.m., when the students joined their
    fellow-citizens in lighting the Yule logs in front of the Nis


    A great uproar of public disapproval greeted an article in today's
    issue of the state-owned daily Ekspres Politika claiming that
    Predrag Starcevic, who died after the Socialist counter-rally in
    Belgrade held on December 24, had succumbed to a heart-attack and
    that he had been critically intoxicated.

    ``Predrag Starcevic died of injuries inflicted by blows made using
    mechanical tools,'' stated head of the post-mortem commission who
    examined Starcevic's body, Branimir Aleksandric, Ph. D. Med. Sci.
    Rejecting the ``Politika Ekspres'' allegations, he said that the
    numerous internal injuries as well as those visible on Starcevic's
    body were produced by heavy blows with blunt mechanical tools. He
    rejected the claim that Starcevic's blood contained 3 promiles of
    alcohol -- the amount was 0.8 promiles, according to Prof.
    Aleksandric, which puts it in the category of ``very light
    intoxication.''  Prof. Aleksandric announced that the official
    findings of the post-mortem may be released to the public as early
    as Wednesday, the day a final toxicological analysis is expected
    to be completed. The results of this analysis, he emphasized,
    cannot alter the present diagnosis of the causes of Predrag
    Starcevic's death.


    The Deutsche Mark leaped to a new height today, selling for as
    much as 4.7 dinars on the black market in Novi Sad.

    Prepared by: Aleksandra Scepanovic
    Edited by: Vaska Andjelkovic (Tumir)

    ODRAZ B92, Belgrade                             Daily News Service
    e-mail: beograd@siicom.com      URL: http://www.siicom.com/odrazb/
            odrazb92@b92.opennet.org     http://www.siicom.com/b92/

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