Serbians who have been protesting against the government for the past three months held a silent march on Tuesday to commemorate the 16th anniversary of the murder of Serbia’s liberal Prime Minister Zoran Djindjic.
The commemoration was held under the slogan “If we do not succeed today, the only reason is we ourselves” – one of Djindjic’s own sayings.
It was staged by the organisers of the “1 of 5 million” events which have attracted tens of thousands people to protests against the Serbian government across the country since December.
“On March 12, we remember everything we lost and everything we could have in a normal democratic society,” the organisers said.
Instead of blowing whistles, protesters who gathered in the centre of Belgrade and then walked to the government building brought candles and flowers.
During the day, the opposition Liberal Democratic Party, which is not taking part in the weekly “1 of 5 million” protests, held a separate commemoration for Djindjic, while government officials laid flowers in the back yard of the government building where he was shot 16 years ago.
Djindjic co-founded the pro-Western Democratic Party, which spearheaded a revolt against Slobodan Milosevic in 2000.
After becoming prime minister, he played a pivotal role in the arrest and extradition of Milosevic to the Hague Tribunal to face war crimes charges.
He was assassinated on March 12, 2003 by members of the Interior Ministry’s Special Operations Unit, who conspired to commit the murder with the help of the Zemun Clan organised crime gang.