protests against Serbia’s curfew

Thousands of angry protesters gathered in Belgrade on Tuesday evening to protest against a new curfew announced by President Aleksandar Vucic following a recovery in the number of cases of coronavirus in Serbia.

President Aleksandar Vucic’s announcement of a new curfew this weekend to fight a resurgence of coronavirus in Serbia triggered a protest in Belgrade where police fired tear gas on Tuesday, July 7, spreading thousands of protesters gathered in front of Parliament.

Critics criticized the president for lifting up the initial containment measures in a faster way in order to organize the June 21 election, a vote largely won by the ruling party.

“Resignation”, “Stop Vucic”, shouted the protesters who threw stones at the police. A small group broke into Parliament before being rejected by the rebel police. During the night, a cord of police had been exposed to protect Parliament.

Rebound

After mastering the first wave of the epidemic in early May, this country in the Balkans is registering a recovery in the number of cases, which officially goes from about 50 daily infections a month ago to about 300 or even 350 at present. Authorities reported the deaths to 13 people on Tuesday, the largest daily report to date officially announced. The pandemic has infected about 17,000 people and left a total of 330 dead.

“Nobody can stand these numbers, we do not want to kill our doctors,” Aleksandar Vucic said, announcing a new curfew over the weekend. He added that the hospitals were overwhelmed with nearly 4,000 patients.

Prime Minister Ana Brnabic “strongly condemned” vandalism “against Parliament at a time when the country and our health care system are facing its worst blow since the pandemic began,” RTS-TV reported.

The authorities had already tightened the measures to combat the pandemic last week. After a month-long break, the hospital was fully dedicated to Covid-19 in the capital. The government has declared an emergency in several cities, including Belgrade, where a field hospital has been opened.

With AFP