June 21, 2024

Elections in Serbia: Collapse of the opposition in Belgrade – News

Local elections will be held in Serbia on Sunday. But in Belgrade, of all places, the broad opposition coalition collapsed.

In the evening in the largest district of Belgrade, Novi Belgrade. The picture is characterized by large residential complexes and wide streets. Traffic is constantly moving. But between the houses, children play in wide green spaces.

A group of volunteers set up stands and distributed election advertisements. There is also Dobrika Veselinovic, who addresses everyone passing by with a tie and rolled up sleeves. He is the mayoral candidate from a joint list of various centre-left opposition parties.

Difficult election campaign

A few passersby strike up a conversation, but most pick up the flyers without uttering a word and quickly move on. “This time of day is difficult, most people just want to go home after a long day of work,” says Dobrika Veselinovic.

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Mayoral candidate Dobrika Veselinović addresses passersby during the election campaign.

SRF

However, these short meetings are important for the opposition. The ruling Serbian Progressive Party, led by Aleksandar Vucic, largely dominates public space and the media. Dobrika Veselinovic has no illusions: “As long as Aleksandar Vucic remains in power, there will be no free elections in Serbia.”

Partial boycott of the opposition

For this reason, part of the opposition is boycotting the elections in Belgrade. In their eyes, it makes no sense to compete under these circumstances.

Dobrika Veselinović regrets this and at the same time downplays the importance of the matter. He is not talking about boycotting, but rather that some parties simply will not run. In addition, we continue to work with these parties in the national parliament.

People stand at information stands at an external political event.

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Street confrontations are important for the opposition because Vucic dominates public space and the media.

SRF

There were already elections in Belgrade in December. Despite widespread election fraud, the ruling party was unable to obtain a majority. Success for them The opposition ran in the elections with a broad list at that time. The disintegration of the previous coalition will certainly weaken the opposition.

Local elections in Serbia


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Close the box

Local elections will be held in most cities and municipalities in Serbia on Sunday. While some parties are boycotting the elections in the capital, Belgrade, the opposition stands united everywhere else in the country. Therefore, electoral successes are more likely in the second largest city of Novi Sad or the southern city of Nice.

There were already parliamentary elections in Serbia in December and at the local level in Belgrade. At the time, allegations of fraud overshadowed the election. National and international election observers accuse the government of severely manipulating the election results. Experts also expect that there will be fraud attempts in the current elections.

Dobrika Veselinovic remains optimistic. You are better prepared than you were in December. They have created different scenarios in case fraud attempts occur again. He also believes that local elections are just the first step. Electoral successes in various cities and municipalities across the country are intended to create the basis on which Vucic’s power can be attacked at the national level.

Others are more skeptical

Milica is less optimistic. The young candidate says that the partial boycott weakens her concerns. Many people are confused: “Even now, three days before the election, some people ask me whether our party is running in the election.” But Milica also believes that it is right not to give up. They will have to win one street at a time, one city at a time. She says this is the only way to defeat Vucic’s regime.

Woman wearing a pink jacket on the sidewalk.

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Milica is confident. She is a nurse and gets involved in the opposition after her shifts.

SRF

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