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Croatia: Protection needed after smear campaign against journalist Anja Kožul

As part of the Media Freedom Rapid Response (MFRR), the European Federation of Journalists (EFJ), the International Press Institute (IPI) and the European Centre for Press and Media Freedom (ECPMF) condemn the smear campaign against Croatian journalist Anja Kožul and call for her protection.

Anja Kožul works for Novosti, a Croatian and Serbian-language weekly magazine published by the Serb National Council (SNV) in Croatia, which covers issues related to the Serb community in the country.

She has been exposed to numerous threats, insults and attacks coming from Serbia since 1 December. The hate campaign started after she published an article entitled “From Islamophobe to state official” about Arnaud Gouillon, a French and Serbian national known in Serbia for his advocacy for the Kosovo Serbs. The article refers to Gouillon’s recent appointment as head of the Directorate for Cooperation with the Diaspora and Serbs in the region.

The threats were reported to the police and an investigation is currently underway. The EFJ, the IPI and the ECPMF urge the General Police Directorate and the Croatian Minister of the Interior to ensure that the necessary steps are taken to protect Anja Kožul.

Nik Williams