More Hate Speech in the BH Public Sphere

koalicija za borbuThe Coalition for Combat Against Hate Speech and Hate Crime strongly condemns new instances of hate crime in the public arena as well the inactivity of the responsible institutions in adequately condemning the acts.

On Sunday, December 8th, 2013, the portal published an article about the brutal beating of Mehmed Mujic, the president of the association “Evropski put Roma”/”The European Path for Roma.” The commentary found beneath the article are sad and unbelievable examples of hate speech against the Roma community in BiH, and they are unacceptable in the public sphere.

Comments like, “The gypsies are only driving themselves to dig their graves, and then to hit them in the head with hammers, and then the next drives the previous, and it continues in a cycle…” or “kill, kill, kill the gypsy” are unacceptable in a news source that is one of the most prominent and most read in BiH.

We ask the editorial staff of the portal to erase the problematic comments and block access to the users who posted the comments because this will be acting in accordance with professional and ethical standards, as well as with BiH laws. We also ask the responsible authorities to process such a grave violation of criminal legislation and prevent further provocation as well as incitement to hatred and intolerance against Roma people. 

We also to Fatmir Alispahic’s text, which was taken from his blog and published on the portal under the name “Fatmir’s 10 Points.” The sentences are as follows:

”Christians have put the ornaments of their holidays, which come in three weeks time, all over the place. Why do they do that? They could have kept the lanterns on for the whole year in the glory of Christmas! Isn’t all of this some kind of frustration, being spiteful, using banal primitivism to send the message to Muslims: here we are, winking at you, celebrating Christmas under you noses, so screw you?”
”Of course, I acknowledge the human rights of atheists, and homosexuals and alcoholics, and pork eaters and communists, but I cannot put them on the same level with people who believe in God.”

They must be condemned. Considering that this is not the first time that Fatmir Alispahic has spread and incited hate and violence against different ethnic and religious communities and minority groups, we call on the responsible authorities to process these examples of inciting hatred. We also call for the launching of an investigation against Alispahic and an appropriate reaction in accordance with the Anti-Discrimination Law of BiH, as well as the Criminal Code of FBiH. 

The Coalition for Combat Against Hate Speech and Hate Crime