Serbia’s journalist on hunger strike again

Photo: NUNS

BELGRADE, 12.08.2019. – Maja Pavlovic, the owner of TV Channel 9 form the northern city of Novi Sad told the Beta news agency on Monday she started hunger strike for the third time in 15 months, after saying the promises from her meeting with Serbia’s Prime Minister Ana Brnabic were not met.

Pavlovic said she expected a meeting with Serbia’s President Aleksandar Vucic, who, she said, showed interest for her TV case.

She decided to go on hunger strike again because the state institutions did not do their job despite Prime Minister and some other officials promises.

Brnabic, however, said that the institutions did everything possible under the laws, and could do nothing more. She previously said that a hunger strike was blackmail.

Pavlovic stopped the strike after the meeting, but since, according to her, the promises weren’t met, she said any new talks with Brnabic would be senseless.

“Mladen Basic from Brnabic’s cabinet told me that President Vucic is interested in our case and wants to meet with us,” she told Beta.

She added the meeting had been postponed due to floods, lousy weather, Kosovo, “so there was no free time (for the meeting). I hope some term will be agreed soon.”

Pavlovic said she “only wait for the President to do what he said he would two months ago.”

“Here I am holding my phone,m waiting for the call (from Vucic), she said at the beginning of the hunger strike.

Pavlovic is striking outside the Regulatory Body for Electronic Media (REM), as she was four months ago.

She then said her only demand was for “the state to start acting in line with its laws.”

“Is it normal that after five years we still don’t have an administrative court ruling? Is it normal that my initiative and an appeal with the Constitutional Court to look into the legality of the taxes implemented by the Serbian Music Authors’ Organisation (SOKOJ) and the Organisation of Phonograms Producers in Serbia (OFPS) still have no answer after three years?” Pavlovic asked.

N1 Belgrade/Beta, Belgrade, 12/08/2019