Graffiti – antisemitic, Islamophobic, racist, fascist, xenophobic, as well as any individual act of intolerance that humiliates or incites hatred towards any social group or individual based on some personal characteristic, is to be condemned, said Commissioner for the Protection of Equality, Brankica Janković, in Novi Pazar, where she visited the Commissioner’s regional office and participated in the local Novopazarska Sofra event.
There is no place for graffiti of such content that is being written in Belgrade, Novi Sad, and other places, the Commissioner pointed out, stating that agreeing or disagreeing with some policy or decisions of a country cannot be used as an excuse and justification for hatred and attacks on all members of that nation. In today’s time of pronounced geopolitical crises, we must not allow tensions and conflicts to spill over into our society in the form of spreading hatred and intolerance, said Janković and added that we must cherish the values of the common life of citizens of all nationalities and religions because we all live here together and belong to this society.
In a conversation with colleagues in the office in Novi Pazar, directly familiarizing herself with the problems of the citizens, the Commissioner emphasized the importance of this office, which was founded nine years ago and which enables the citizens of Novi Pazar and the surrounding area easier and direct access to the institution of the Commissioner. It is important that we are available to all citizens and act preventively, constantly improve protection, and exercise rights more effectively in case of violation of the right to equality, said Janković.
The one-day visit to Novi Pazar was also an opportunity for the Commissioner to attend the event aimed at building connections between women from urban and rural areas throughout the country “Novopazarska Sofra – building connections” organized by the NGO Liberatrix. This is one of the five local manifestations that the Commissioner for the Protection of Equality supported as part of the project “Improving the position of women and girls in rural areas”, and which the institution of the Commissioner has been implementing for the last three years in cooperation with UN Women and with the support of the Norwegian Embassy in Belgrade.