Peaceful Protests Follow Anti-Govt Riots in Bosnia

World | February 9, 2014, Sunday // 09:36|  views

A child walks past policemen standing guard in front of the destroyed windows of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina in Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina, 08 February 2014. Photo by EPA/JASMIN BRUTUS.

A few hundred people protested peacefully in Bosnia's capital, Sarajevo, and other cities on Saturday night.

Meanwhile, local governments in four cities, including Sarajevo, resigned amid the unrest, and one mayor fled the country, according to media reports.

The wave of demonstrations started on Wednesday in Bosnia's northern town of Tuzla, where workers took to the streets to oppose the closure of companies sold off by the state.

More than 130 people, including 104 police officers, were injured on the second day of anti-government rallies in Tuzla.

Protesters in Tuzla set fire to the local government building amid clashes with police.

An emergency situation was declared around the building of the Sarajevo Canton government, Friday after protesters started throwing stones, garbage bins and road signs at police officers and then set fire to the government building.

"This was a long accumulated dissatisfaction," acknowledged Bosnia's Foreign Minister Zlatko Lagumdzija.

"The kids who did this were born in a post-war society and watched their parents being ripped off by tycoons in criminal privatization. They grew up with no hope for a bright future, watching poverty and injustice."

People took the streets in protest against the nation's almost 40 percent unemployment rate and rampant corruption, as well as the lack of economic and political progress.

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Tags: Bosnia, protest, Sarajevo, government, Tuzla, unemployment, corruption


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