Freedom House: Democracy in Serbia at Standstill | Beta Briefing

Freedom House: Democracy in Serbia at Standstill

Source: Beta
Archive / News | 24.05.23 | access_time 12:27

Serbia against Violence protest in Belgrade on May 19 (BETAPHOTO/MILOS MISKOV)

Serbia has achieved no progress in democracy in the past twelve months, while its people’s skepticism regarding EU membership is the result of the regime’s hold over the media and public discourse, the NGO Freedom House stated in its annual report titled “Nations in Transit 2023.”

According to the document, Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic “has maintained his grip on power in part by positioning himself as the key to both domestic stability and regional security, using various self-serving crises to distract from his government’s ongoing capture of the media and silencing of critical voices in civil society.”

In its section on Serbia, the NGO further maintains that although the opposition “returned to the political playing field after a 2020 electoral boycott,” the presidential and parliamentary elections of April 2022 “were once again marred by irregularities, resulting in victories for incumbent president Aleksandar Vucic and his Serbian Progressive Party.”

The report goes on to say that, in 2022, the citizens of EU member-candidate countries generally remain in favor of joining the EU, but are also doubtful that full membership could be achieved in the near future.

The exception to this, Freedom house adds, are the people of Serbia, who are highly skeptical regarding the benefits of joining the EU.

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