Within our Engaged Democracy Initiative, the European Fund for the Balkans and the Institute for Democratic Engagement Southeast Europe organised the panel - SLAPP lawsuits, intimidation and threats: A slap in the face of engaged citizens?. It took take place in Pristina on November 14, at 5.30 pm at Dit' e Nat'.
The speakers at this public discussion were Flutura Kusari (Senior Legal Advisor, ECPMF and member of Steering Committee of CASE), Xheni Karaj (Alliance Against Discrimination of LGBT, Tirana) and Tara Petrović (Civic Initiatives, Belgrade), and it was moderated by Adelina Hasani (Prizma Medium, Prizren).
At this panel we discussed the vulnerable position of the civil society activists and engaged citizens in the entire Western Balkans region. From direct physical attacks that we saw at the Euro Pride in Belgrade, to using abusing lawsuits known as SLAPP to silence journalists and activists, the conclusion was that are witnessing a pandemic of threats and intimidation of those fighting to change the status quo.
These examples further demonstrate the need for connecting initiatives and movements regionally and for nurturing regional solidarity, because no matter whether they are fighting in Sinjajevina, Tirana or Jajce, their interconnection and exchange of experience provide a safety net against corrupt and authoritarian institutions and officials.
You can check the video of the discussion with great inputs, examples, facts and interventions on this important topic at our EFB You Tube channel.