Serbian PM Fires Defence Minister Gasic over Sexist Remark

Southeast Europe | December 7, 2015, Monday // 21:49|  views

Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic. File photo EPA/BGNES

Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic has said that Bratislav Gasic cannot carry on in the position of Defence Minister after making an offensive comment about a female journalist.

"It was a bad message to all women. A minister cannot allow himself to do that," Vucic told reporters on Monday, according to Tanjug.

Although Gasic had publicly apologised to the journalist and said he regretted his remark, that was not enough, Vucic said.

Vucic also said the inappropriate comment was the only reason to fire Gasic who had been doing his job well and was one of the most loyal ministers in the cabinet.

Vucic said he didn’t know yet who will become the country's new defence minister, according to Serbian broadcaster B92. The technicalities of replacing Gasic would be worked out in the following days, the Serbian prime minister added.

On Sunday, as journalists were waiting for Gasic to come to them and make a statement during a visit to a military factory in Trstenik, some of them, including a female journalist from B92, knelt down before him to keep out of the view of the cameras.

When Gasic arrived, he said: "I like these female journalists who kneel so easily," according to B92.

Gasic's statement was not only sexist but it also indicated that “for him personally, his ministry, and the government he is a member of […] journalists are acceptable while kneeling in front of the executive power,” B92 said.

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Tags: Serbia, defence minister, Vucic, Gasic, journalist, female


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