More than 20,000 Croats have been protesting against plans to put up bilingual signs using the Serbian Cyrillic alphabet.
The Social Democrat-led government, which will take the country into the European Union on July 1, wants to put up signs later this month, in both the Latin script used for Croatian and in Cyrillic, in areas where the population is more than one third ethnic Serb.
The issue is extremely sensitive in Vukovar, a town still traumatised by the war in the former Yugoslavia.
According to the 2011 census, there are about a dozen regions in Croatia with a sizeable Serb community, including the easternmost town of Vukovar, which many Croats still see as a
symbol of destruction and suffering brought on by the Serb rebellion against Croatia’s independence from Yugoslavia.
More than two decades on, Croat and minority Serbs communities live separate lives and some now fear fresh violence.
“I can’t stand this. I can’t even look at Serbs…and now they want Cyrillic here? They spilled the blood of our sons, of our men, our neighbours. I don’t like them at all. If they did not kill people, they could have lived here with no problem,” said Mara Jurcic, whose 25-year-old son Pavo was among more than 200 prisoners executed and buried in a mass grave at a pig farm near Vukovar.
Tomislav Josic, one of the organisers, said they wanted the law on minority rights, which stipulates bilingual signs, not to be applied to Vukovar “as a sign of respect for the sacrifice Vukovar has made”.
The picturesque town on the Danube was reduced to rubble during a three-month siege by the Serb-dominated Yugoslav army and local Serb militia in 1991. All non-Serbs were expelled and some 200 patients from a local hospital were executed after its capture by the Serbs.
Copyright © 2014 euronewsMore about:
- 1‘Allahu Akbar’ lone wolf attacker shot dead by French police
- 2Who is the EU’s worst at spending Brussels’ billions?
- 3ISIL fighters ‘flee’ Iraq’s Sinjar as Peshmerga troops ‘make gains’
- 4New laws to ‘wipe out’ militants after Pakistan school massacre
- 5New Romanian President Klaus Iohannis vows to tackle corruption
- 1Rosetta team is euronews’ people of 2014
- 2Pakistanis protest against Taliban as army intensifies offensive in north-west
- 3‘Allahu Akbar’ lone wolf attacker shot dead by French police
- 4Australia: two hostages and gunman dead after police storm Sydney siege café
- 5ISIL fighters ‘flee’ Iraq’s Sinjar as Peshmerga troops ‘make gains’
- 1euronews live TV - News | euronews : the latest international news as video on demand
- 2Watch: Passengers ‘push-start’ frozen plane in Siberia | euronews, world news
- 3Le Pen: I admire ‘cool head’ Putin’s resistance to West’s new Cold War | euronews, interview
- 4McCain blasts Europe’s approach to Ukraine conflict ‘a joke’ | euronews, the global conversation
- 5Which countries in Europe cause the most air pollution damage? | euronews, world news
- 6Moldova pro-EU parties take narrow lead in elections | euronews, world news
- 7Grenoble: Europe’s first ad-free city | euronews, world news
- 8NATO joins search for ‘Russian submarine’ off Scottish coast | euronews, world news
- 9European Union News | euronews: latest breaking news and headlines about European Union
- 10Ukraine reports accident at Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant | euronews, world news
- 11Crude awakening: Romania’s Black Sea oil and gas finds fuel Europe’s energy hopes | euronews, reporter
- 12The American Century comes to an end as China becomes the world’s largest economy | euronews, economy
- 13International breaking news | euronews online world breaking news in video
- 14Belgium’s former queen Fabiola dies at 86 | euronews, world news
- 15Germans demand honour for Turkish woman beaten to death | euronews, world news
- 16Chechen ‘death’ unit fighting with rebels in eastern Ukraine | euronews, world news
- 17Portugal: Ex-PM José Socrates held in corruption probe | euronews, world news
- 18Pakistan Taliban ‘kill over 100’ in Peshawar school attack | euronews, world news
- 19Israeli warplanes hit targets in Syria | euronews, world news
- 20Raids across Turkey target media outlets linked to Erdogan foe Fethullah Gulen | euronews, world news
Wires > News
- 19:06 CET Libya fighting spreads to third oil port, 11 killed in Benghazi
- 18:32 CET U.S. sees Cuban thaw boosting odds of returned fugitives
- 18:17 CET Al Jazeera suspends Egypt channel as Doha, Cairo mull closer ties
- 17:35 CET Cameroon army says dismantles Boko Haram training camp
- 17:26 CET Italy says breaks up neo-fascist group suspected of planning…
- 17:11 CET From Baltic to Asia, East-West aerial confrontations heat up
- 17:00 CET Police officers’ slaying raises pressure on New York mayor
- 15:55 CET Turkey’s Erdogan says birth control ‘treason’ against Turkish…