Oliver Ivanovic’s friends and colleagues called on the citizens to light a candle in his honor this Sunday, the fourth anniversary of his assassination, at 8.15 am – at the time and site of Ivanovic’s assassination in North Mitrovica.
Ivanovic’s associates believe that a greater number of citizens will heed the call and gather in front of the party premises of late Ivanovic, thus marking the anniversary of his murder, than was the case in previous years.
„And while you are debating (cf. whether you’ll come or not), just remember that you could find yourself in the same situation simply because you think differently or because you’re protecting yourself,“ they wrote on social networks.
During that time, a protest walk under the slogan „Who assassinated Oliver?“ will once again be held in Belgrade.
It will take place on Sunday at noon on Andricev venac. The protest participants will then march to the Church of St. Mark, where they will light candles in Ivanovic’s honor.
Several representatives of opposition parties called on the citizens to participate in the protest walk.
The leader of the opposition Party of Freedom and Justice, Dragan Djilas shared a video and also called on the citizens to gather in front of the Church of St. Mark in Belgrade on Sunday.
The protest walk versus the referendum?
While the opposition is announcing protest walks for Sunday, a referendum on changes to the Serbian Constitution will be held on the very same day. The opposition is torn between boycotting the referendum and going to the polls to vote against these constitutional changes.
According to the part of the opposition, this protest march, as well as the blockades organized in protest of the referendum, present a better way to mark this day – instead of going to the polls.
Posters bearing the image of the slain Oliver Ivanovic, with the inscription “No referendum on 16th January! A walk for Oliver Ivanovic on January 16th,“ were shared on social networks even earlier.
Protest walks in memory of Oliver Ivanovic were held in Belgrade in previous years, when citizens and part of the opposition reminded the authorities of the need to carry out an investigation, find and punish the perpetrators and instigators of the murder of Oliver Ivanovic.
One of the most impressive protest walks was the one held during the „One in Five Million“ protests, in 2020, on the second anniversary of the assassination.
Questionable indictment, slow proceedings?
The leader of the GI SDP, Oliver Ivanovic, was gunned down with six shots to the back in front of his party’s offices in North Mitrovica on January 16th, 2018.
Although years have passed since the murder and top Kosovo and Serbian officials made several announcements and deadlines for a fair epilogue to the case, the perpetrators and instigators have not yet been identified and prosecuted.
The first arrests were made after the murder – on February 11th, when two police officers were arrested on suspicion that they tampered with evidence at the murder site. However, they returned to work a few months later. On November 23rd, 2018, one of the police officers was arrested again along with two other persons whose names were listed in the indictment.
The first indictment was filed on December 2nd, 2019, against six people, who were already in custody at the time (including the secretary of Oliver Ivanovic), and a warrant was issued for four more persons. The indictment was revised two more times in late December 2019. In November 2020, the same indictment was harshly criticized for being “questionable” and accusations were made that the proceedings were extremely slow. Only a few hearings were held in less than two years. In the meantime, the arrest warrant against SL Vice-President Milan Radoicic was revoked. In December 2021, the US Department of the Treasury released its sanctions list which included 13 businessmen and persons from the north, including the persons listed in the indictment in the case of the murder of Oliver Ivanovic – Milan Radoicic, Zvonko Veselinovic, Zarko Veselinovic, Zeljko Bojic, Marko Rosic, and Milan Mihailovic.
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