BH Journalists: Zoran Čegar must be immediately sanctioned for brutal threats to CIN journalists!

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Source/Author: BHN

Photo credit: CIN 

Sarajevo, 27.10.2021. – The Steering Committee of the BH Journalists Association demands from the Directorate of Federal Police (FUP) and the federal minister of internal affairs Aljoša Čampara to immediately sanction Zoran Čegar, head of the Uniformed Police Sector, for brutal threats to journalists from the Center for Investigative Journalism from Sarajevo!

Working on the story about how he acquired multimillion-dollar property in Bosnia and Herzegovina and Croatia, CIN journalists contacted Čegar to get the necessary information. In a telephone conversation, they asked Čegar for an interview, but he refused, with threats and curses. Čegar ended the conversation with journalists by saying: “Don’t even think of calling me again, so that I don’t come to you from where you’re calling me”, and he cursingly called the journalist a “Chetnik”.

A similar attack on CIN journalists was repeated yesterday in front of the Dubrovnik Municipal Court, where Zoran Čegar’s trial for the criminal offense of fraud began. After the CIN journalist asked Čegar for a comment, he reacted violently and threatened: “Don’t make me rip your throat out!”.

Such monstrous threats and insults to journalists come from a high-ranking person in the police hierarchy, who should be responsible for law enforcement and protecting citizens from all kinds of brutality, physical and verbal attacks, and not be the one who will attack and threaten!

The fact that a high-ranking police officer in a public position verbally attacks CIN journalists and directly threatens with physical violence has additional weight and requires an urgent response from the federal police structures! At the very least, the aforementioned actions towards our colleagues deserve the immediate suspension of Zoran Čegar from the position he holds.

If the FUP and federal minister Čampara have not already found it appropriate to react due to the fact that the indictment against Čegar for the criminal offense of fraud was brought up in Croatia in 2019, justifying that they “did not know” about it because “Čegar didn’t inform them” (?!), then brutal threats and violent behavior towards journalists should be reason enough to dismiss such a person from all official duties and sanction him in accordance with the law.

The Steering Committee of the BH Journalists Association and the Free Media Help Line (FMHL) will report this case to the Directorate of Federal Police, as well as other competent domestic and international institutions, and insist on the sanctioning of the police officer Čegar and his prosecution for assaulting and endangering the safety of journalists.

Steering Committee of BH Journalists Association/Free Media Help Line