SERBIA & MONTENEGRO: Attempt to arrest conscientious objector Dragoslav Dojkic


Today, on 4 February 2004, the police tried to arrest Serbian conscientious objector Dragoslav Dojkic. In the morning police visited his home, but he was not at home. The police left a message with his mother that he is wanted, and that he will be arrested and forced to sign his call up order for the military.

Dragoslav Djokic turned conscientious objector during the NATO bombing campaign against Yugoslavia in 1999. Then, a cluster bomb was dropped into his backyard, seriously injuring one of his neighbours.

Dragoslav Djokic applied for conscientious objector status. On 20 February 2004, the Special Commission for Civilian Service of the Military Department of Nis turned down his application, because he was fined for "an act against public peace and order" and for keeping "dangerous animals" in 2002. According to Article 10 of the present regulation on Civilian Service, applicants who have been presecuted for "acts against public peace and order" are excluded from the right to conscientious objection. In 2002 Dragoslav Djokic was fined 400 dinars for taking his dog for a walk in a park without wearing a muzzle. As the dog was on a lead, and they were in a park, Dragoslav Djokic has removed the muzzle. It is important to note that he was not charged for a criminal offence, but fined for a misdemeanour.

Dragoslav Djokic appealed to the Ministry of Defence. However, in a letter dated 1 November 2004, his appeal was turned down. Presently, Dragoslav Djokic is appealing to the Supreme Court. Nevertheless, the Army sent Dragoslav Djokic a call up for March 2005. According to regulations, Dragoslav Djokic would need to sign for his call up on receiving it. However, he refuses this, and he refuses to perform any form of military service.

Dragoslav Djokic is presently under danger of being arrested. War Resisters' International calls for protest letters to the authorities of Serbia&Montenegro. A protest email can be sent at . Mr Prvoslav Davinic
Minister of Defence of Serbia and Montenegro Bircaninova 5
11000 Beograd
Serbia and Montenegro
Fax +381-11-3203466 and +381-11-3117809 email

War Resisters' International calls for the immediate halt of proceedings against Dragoslav Djokic, and for the recognition of his right to conscientious objection.

Andreas Speck
War Resisters' International

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