Kosovo Police detained a suspect connected to the attack against Kallxo journalist Taulant Osmani and are inquiring into threats against civil society activists who organized yesterday’s protest in Gjilan.
Kallxo.com journalist Taulant Osmani was threatened with physical attack and verbally abused yesterday in Gjilan while covering a protest against the relocation of a Yugoslav monument, which has stood as a city landmark for over 50 years.
Osmani was recording a heated debate between protesters against the relocation and supporters of the move, when he was shoved and threatened with physical attack, as well as verbally abused. The attackers also tried to grab his phone. Police identified and arrested a suspect connected to Osmani’s attack and ordered a 48-hour detainment.
It appears that Osmani was not the only to be threatened yesterday during the protest against the relocation of the Yugoslav-era monument, erected in honor of the martyrs of the Anti-Fascist War.
Vlore Shabiu, project manager of the non-governmental organization KAND, one of the organizers of Saturday’s protest, was also threatened by a group of Gjilan residents as the protest was happening.
According to Shabiu, she and other activists were attacked while she was reading a statement for the media.
“In addition to the Kallxo.com journalist, we, the civil society activists, were also threatened,” Shabiu said, adding that the representatives of the five organizations behind the protest had received multiple threats during the protest.
“Additionally, at the time I was reading my statement, a young man came rapidly in my direction, intending to attack me. My colleagues reacted and stopped him in time.”
After this incident, other people in the crowd also threatened them.
“We were continuously threatened by some other people who kept asking us ‘where do you live,’ ‘tell us your names so we have them,’” said Shabiu.
Kosovo Police Spokesperson for the Gjilan region Ismet Hashani confirmed that a suspect was detained regarding Osmani’s attack and that the police had also documented the attack against Shabiu.
“A person was identified regarding [yesterday’s] case in the city center…He has been detained for 48 hours by order of the prosecution,” said Hashani, adding that the police are considering the case as an attack.
Hashani also confirmed that Shabiu was interviewed and her case was also being inquired into.
12 November 2017 - 15:14
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