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Radio-Television Prima's studio vandalised

(ANEM/IFEX) - Belgrade, October 18, 2011 - The Association of Independent Electronic Media (ANEM) strongly protests the series of attacks on a member of the association, Radio-Television Prima from Bajina Basta.

Near the end of last week and during the weekend, the studio of Radio-Television Prima from Bajina Basta was pelted with stones. Several windows on the building were broken and three tires slit on the company's car. Radio-Television Prima said that this had been the third attack on their company vehicle in the last three months.

ANEM points out that pressure on the media and attempted attacks are increasing in the run-up to the parliamentary and local elections. All means are being used, from "friendly suggestions", economic pressure to open threats and violent attacks.

ANEM urges the authorities to immediately investigate the attacks on Radio-Television Prima from Bajina Basta and punish the perpetrators. This is necessary to prevent an escalation from vandalism and property damage to physical attacks against journalists and editors.

ANEM expresses its full solidarity with Radio-Television Prima staff, as well as those of all other media outlets that have been exposed to threats and pressure because of the nature of their work. ANEM demands that the state authorities and the local self-government in Bajina Basta, as well as all other regions in Serbia where journalists have been threatened, take all necessary measures to guarantee the safety of journalists and their editorial offices, and to ensure an appropriate environment for citizens and journalists to exercise their right to freedom of expression, media operations and to fully realize their role in a democratic society. Fulfillment of that role requires facilitating the widest possible public debate on all issues of public interest, which should take place without participants fearing for their personal safety.

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