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Civil disobedience sweeps across Serbia

BELGRADE, Friday -- A wave of civil disobedience is spreading through the cities of Serbia in response to a call from the Democratic Opposition of Serbia for citizens to defend their choice of president.

Zoran Djindjic, the campaign manger for the Democratic opposition of Serbia today called on people and companies throughout Serbia to join a campaign of civil disobedience and a general strike in order to force the Yugoslav authorities to accept the presidential victory of Vojislav Kostunica.

At the afternoon's protest in Republic Square, Djindjic said that the Federal Election Commission had been given a deadline of 24 hours to respond to the complaints lodged by the opposition. "This is the last time we shall contact them," said Djindjic, "We shall try to make contact with the institutions in charge of defending the laws and Constitution of the country," he added.

Secondary schools took the lead in the response with thousands of students walking out of classes and marching into town and city squares across the country. In Belgrade, traffic in central Kralja Milana St was blocked as a column of high school students marched to the opposition's rallying point on Republic Square.

There were similar scenes throughout the Serbia, as thousands of high school students, many accompanied by their teachers, mounted the first protests.

In most cities they were later joined by factory workers, public transport drivers and taxi drivers. In many centres, only essential services such as water supply have remained operating.

Source: B92

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