Analysis 21 Jul 16

Serbia's ‘Lies’ Exhibition Alarms Independent Journalists

Prominent editors and media watchdogs accuse Serbia’s ruling party of adding to the pressures on a free media by showcasing so-called journalistic ‘lies’.

Milivoje Pantovic
BIRN
Belgrade
Serbian government and Progressive Party officials at the exhibition opening. Photo: BIRN/Milivoje Pantovic.

The controversial exhibition in Belgrade, organised by Serbia’s ruling party and entitled “Uncensored Lies”, has drawn more attention from both the pro-government and independent media and media watchdogs than it has from ordinary people.

Christian Mihr, director of the German arm of Reporters Without Borders, RSF, said he was concerned.

“Reporters Without Borders urges the Serbian authorities to refrain from hindering the work of independent media outlets, to put existing laws ensuring press freedom into practice,” he wrote in a message to BIRN.

He further called on the Serbian government to end the widespread culture of impunity concerning attacks on journalists.

“The exhibition has dubbed articles critical of the government as ‘uncensored lies’ and accused international NGOs and institutions fighting for press freedom - such as RSF or the OSCE Representative on Freedom of the Media, Dunja Mijatović, of disseminating false information,” Mihr added.

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