Serbia’s history goes back for a long time, even into another, much bigger country called Yugoslavia. Consisting of several Balkan countries, this country was the host of various ethnic nations who lived by each other.
But when Yugoslavia slowly started to dissolve in the 90s, ethnic tensions began to rise, and the segregation commenced.
Our Western news outlets closely kept an eye on the bloody terror that unfolded itself on the Balkan battlefield, when more and more Yugoslavian republics started their fight for independence against the political heart of Yugoslavia, Serbia.
Several conflicts happened over time, some of them still barely solved and some of themwhich left permanent battle scars. That is the picture thirty years later, in which Serbia takes part.
Modern political turmoil
But that is not everything. The nationwide demonstrations that have taken place since late November 2018 lit the fuse for the many dissatisfied Serbs, when an opposition politician wasattacked after giving a speech at a rally. An attack, Serbian President Aleksander Vučić has been accused of being behind. Spurring a greater resentment amongst the protesters towards the president, a man the hundreds of thousands claim is shrinking their basic rights and removing the free media, creating a totalitarian rule.
It’s however not all Serbs that go to the streets wanting to get rid of the President. For many years, Vučić has been a prominent figure and as a former Prime Minister he’s received high popularity among Serbs for many years, in part also because of his stance on keeping close ties with Russia, while becoming a part of the EU. The President has with this political paradox, in the past managed to please the Serbs identifying with Russia, and the Serbs considering themselves as European, a lot of the way. But that’s not the case anymore
Like it is said before, Serbia is a country with a complex identity. At the crossroad between Europe and Russia, past and present, consensus and rebellion. This identity has beenchallenged over the past decades and is now interesting to look at.
During our stay in Serbia, we will report on various topics. Our stories will bring us to Belgrade, the biggest city of the Balkans, but also to small villages and rural areas. We will write about the past, digging into the complexity of Serbian history, and we will write about the future, seeing toward which direction the country is moving. More than everything, we will meet people there, to learn about their lives and their points of view.
Through our stories, we hope to reflect as many facets of the country as possible, and to bring our readers with us on a journey through Serbian identity.