Following an urgent meeting held Wednesday, Serbia’s Regulatory Authority for Electronic Media (REM) decided to end its days-long strike, REM member Judita Popovic confirmed for the daily Danas.
“The REM decided at today’s urgent meeting following support received from the parliamentary majority to end the strike, thus proving that the strike was, after all, a political decision, that is, a bad attempt to counter the 24 hour protest break in programming by N1 and Nova S,” she told Danas daily.
She added that this decision as well as the whole REM strike story “made the media darkness so clear and tangible” and “this society’s need for media freedom and pluralism unquestionable.”
When the N1 and Nova S television stations last week stopped broadcasting their regular programs and blackened their screens for 24 hours in protest over the “media darkness” in Serbia, the REM Council last Thursday decided to suspend work.
As reasons for the “strike” the REM cited “pressures and the threatened safety of its employees by independent media, opposition political parties and the non-governmental sector.”
The REM Council chair, Olivera Zekic, repeatedly said that the media owned by United Media “are literally blackmailing and bullying” the REM and that they “obviously intend to continue doing so until Nova S gets a national broadcasting frequency.”