Banja Luka, May 22, 2015/ Independent Balkan News Agency
By Mladen Dragojlovic
President of the Bosniak Movement for Equality of Nations, Sejfudin Tokic, was apprehended Friday in Banja Luka city center for inciting religious and national hatred and intolerance.
Tokis came in front of City Government and Assembly building with a war time BiH flag trying to protest because of, as he said, the intolerance against Bosniaks in RS. The main occasion of his performance was the 23rd anniversary of the acceptance of BiH in the UN.
Before he was arrested he told the media that Bosniaks in RS experience the torture of governmental institutions and are still second class citizens. Tokic’s showed a flag that looked like the flag that was raised in the front of the UN, 23 years ago. But, Serbs are considering this flag as the Army of the Republic of BiH flag and a symbol of wartime. By weaving this flag, Tokic provoked many citizens who were in the pedestrian zone. Than Tokic took present BiH flag but the police came and took him and his assistant in police station.
RS Minister of interior, Dragan Lukac, confirmed to the media that Tokic was arrested for inciting religious and national hatred and intolerance.
“The police informed the competent prosecutor’s office about the incident and a warrant to bring Tokic in was issued”, Lukac said.
He said that many witnesses confirmed that Tokic recently tried to draw attention to himself with incendiary and inappropriate statements. Tokic recently called Bosniaks in RS to come in Banja Luka to protest of the tortures.
“However, what he did today has surpassed all his intentions, since he came to the place where the wreaths were laid in memory of 12 babies from Banja Luka with the war flag of the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina to provoke. The people who attended the event got into a verbal fight with Tokic”, Lukac said.
That event Lukac was speaking about was organized in the memory of 12 babies who died in the Banja Luka hospital 23 years ago, because the international community forces banned the flight from Belgrade to Banja Luka to transport the oxygen necessary for the babies to survive. Just one baby survived the war, but with hard brain and body damage. She died a few years ago.
The chairman of the Security Committee of the RS National Assembly, Milanko Mihajilica, condemned Tokic actions, pointing out that it was good that the police demonstrated that such activities could not be carried out with impunity.
“He had a clear intention and goal to try to destabilise the situation, but fortunately he doesn’t that capacity”, Mihajlica said.
Tokic was a candidate for RS President on elections in October last year. Right after the war, he was one of political leaders in BiH Federation but disappeared from the political scene almost 10 years ago, only to returned again now. During the incident on Friday, one angry citizen attacked a cameraman of Sarajevo based FACE TV station.
The arrest and the incident were condemned by various organisations and institutions.