Brnabic: Those Who Bombarded Serbia Are Now Lecturing Us on Media Freedoms

The countries which had twenty years ago been included in the NATO bombardment of the then Yugoslavia should not lecture Serbia today on the freedom of media, Prime Minister Ana Brnabic said on Monday.

In one of the so far strongest anti-Western announcements since she has been on the position of Prime Minister, at the conference “The End to the Impunity for Crimes against Journalists”, which is being held in Belgrade in view of the 20th anniversary of NATO air-strikes on the building of the Radio Television Serbia (RTS), when on 22 April 1999 sixteen employees were killed, Brnabic said that this was an act because of which the countries which took part in that attack should be ashamed.

“Twenty years ago, many of those who are today lecturing us on the freedom of media had, mercilessly, from a distance of dozens of km, from a safe distance for them, sent missiles towards a media house”, said Brnabic, who addressed the meeting instead of the announced President Aleksandar Vucic, who was absent for health reasons.

At that, those responsible for this crime will never be held responsible for what they have done, she said.

“No trial will be held, because propaganda, which was, and is also today stronger, proclaimed this building, those people, that media, for propaganda, and thereby a legitimate target”, she said.

“And there will be no [trial] because we are small and helpless to try those who are big and much more powerful”, she added.

“You responded with bombs to a TV program”, said Brnabic, addressing the meeting in the second person singular, which is otherwise the manner practiced by Vucic in public speeches.

This, as well as some strong qualifications which she used in her address,  suggests that it is possible that Brnabic had in fact given the speech which Vucic was preparing to hold.