Tens of thousands protest gun violence in Serbia following shootings

·1-min read
© Zorana Jevtic, Reuters

Tens of thousands of Serbians protested on Monday, demanding better security, a ban on violent TV content and the resignation of key ministers, days after two mass shootings killed 17 people.

Crowds in numbers not seen in the Balkan country for years solemnly marched through the centre of the capital Belgrade behind a banner reading "Serbia Against Violence".

"We have gathered here to pay our last respects, to do our best so this never happens again, anywhere," said Borivoje Plecevic from Belgrade.

A schoolboy who brought two handguns to his school on Wednesday killed eight pupils and a security guard. Six other pupils and a teacher were wounded.

A day later, a 21-year-old man brandishing an assault rifle and a pistol killed eight and wounded 14 people.

Both shooters surrendered to the police.

Protesters and opposition supporters demanded a shutdown of TV stations and tabloids that they accuse of promoting violent and vulgar content.

Opposition parties and some rights groups accuse President Aleksandar Vucic and his ruling populist Serbian Progressive Party (SNS) of autocracy, oppressing media freedoms, violence against political opponents, corruption and ties with organised crime. Vucic and his allies deny the accusations.


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