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Serbia7 September 2006

New bid to frighten independent media group B 92

Reporters Without Borders today deplored a new threat to the independent broadcasting group B92 with explosions near its offices in Belgrade and called on police to thoroughly investigate.

Three blasts went off on 3 September just as a presenter of one of the group’s flagship programmes, “The Week’s Impressions,” and her guests, including human rights activist Natasa Kandic, were leaving the premises shortly before midnight.

Police opened an enquiry the next day and said the explosions were “fireworks” and not gunshots. B92 director Veran Matic has had many death threats and the group’s property has been frequently attacked in recent years.

He said the latest incident was serious and that despite government assurances about press freedom, the safety of journalists and their guests was not being ensured, even though uniformed police were outside the building on the night of the attack and Kandic had received many death threats.

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