CROATIA: Brutal attack on Dusan Miljus - Croatia

CROATIA, 04/06/2008

To:

Ivo Sanader
Prime Minister of the Republic of Croatia

Berislav Roncevic
Minister for Internal Affairs   

Ivo Sanader
Prime Minister of the Republic of Croatia
10 000 Zagreb
Croatia
Fax: +385 1 6303 022 

Berislav Roncevic
Minister for Internal Affairs   
10 000 Zagreb
Croatia
Fax: +385 1 6122 452  

Your Excellencies,  

The Vienna-based South East Europe Media Organisation (SEEMO), a network of editors, media executives and leading journalists from South East Europe and an affiliate of the International Press Institute (IPI), is deeply alarmed about the brutal attack on Dusan Miljus, a journalist for Jutarnji list, a Croatian daily.

According to information before SEEMO, at around 8.15 pm on 2 June, two assailants wearing motorcycle helmets approached Miljus in front of his building in Zagreb, and violently attacked him with bats until he lost consciousness. The attackers fled the scene when a neighbour noticed the attack and started yelling.

Miljus, who was hospitalised, suffered a fractured left arm, a concussion and facial injuries. His writings span 20 years and cover crime in South East Europe, the mafia and Croatian underground circles. Miljus has previously been threatened in connection with his investigative journalism, but has received no protection.

SEEMO is dismayed by this attack, which constitutes a direct threat to investigative journalism and freedom of the press more generally. Democracy falters where journalists are forced to operate in constant fear for their lives.

SEEMO therefore urges Your Excellencies to do everything in your power to ensure Miljus's protection, and to bring to justice the persons behind this brutal incident.

We thank you for your attention. 

Yours sincerely, 

Oliver Vujovic

SEEMO Secretary General

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