Ivkošić calls for lynching in his racist article


Vjesnik, Tuesday, May 23, 2000


Daniela Dujmović


ZAGREB, May 22 – Radojka Borić, a member of the Centre for Women War Victims and the Centre for Women’s Studies and Ljubica Matijević-Vrsaljko, a member of the Autonomous Women’s House Zagreb, stated their mental anguish on Monday at the Municipal Court in a criminal trial in which 15 feminists and members of women’s organizations filed a private lawsuit for slander against Milan Ivkošić, a Večernji list columnist. Ivkošić stated that he understood the lawsuit and when judge Goran B. Heršak asked him if he understood the charges against him, he pleaded not guilty.

In her statement, Radojka Borić pointed out that Ivkošić seriously offended her when he stated a fact from her private life, especially because of the time context when the article was published. “Ivkošić called for a lynching in his article because his racist approach is noticeable in the entire text. Incidentally, I work abroad as a Croatian language professor. Also, I have as a feminist and fighter for human rights fought for the protection of women regardless of their nationalities. His article is offensive to all women, as it is to me personally, and I have experienced inconveniences while working with my co-workers, displaced persons and neighbours and the Centre has received many unpleasant telephone calls from men” – as she described the consequences of the disputable article.

 “When I appeared on the TV show Press klub, I wanted to point out that male violence had returned to the family after the Croatian War of Independence because men had returned to their homes with post-traumatic disorder and without any support from society and they had expressed their anger on their wives. I did not mention any specific nationalities because there were also non-Croatians in the Croatian War of Independence”, explained Borić, one of the plaintiffs.
Ivkošić then asked R. Borić whether she had worked for the Yugoslav State Security Police (UDBA) till 1990 to which the plaintiff answered no. After this, Ivkošić suggested that the court should procure Rada Borić’s police file and those of the other plaintiffs from the Police Departments. Ivkošić said to the plaintiffs in the courthouse: “You are all a pompous form of nature”.

In her statement on the mental anguish caused, Ljubica Matijević-Vrsaljko said that she was insulted as a member of the women’s organization because of claims from the disputable article. “It is a lie that we cared only for non-Croatian women. Incidentally, I am Croatian, I was married and I have a child. That’s why Ivkošić’s term anti-woman has especially insulted me. Various men called me after saying all sorts of obscenities after the article was published”.
The accused columnist asked the plaintiff why she was constantly stressing that she was a Croat and Lj. Matijević-Vrsaljko responded that she was stressing it because she was proud to be a Croat.

During the entire trial, Ivkošić and his defender Marijan Šakić were constantly interrupting the judge and witnesses with their remarks. After the judge warned them of their behaviour, Šakić asked the judge to remove himself from the case. However, this request was smoothly rejected.


ZAGREB, May 22 – Prof. Radojka Borić from the Centre for Women War Victims, Dr. Biljana Kašić from the Centre for Women’s Studies, Slavica Kušić from the Autonomous Women’s House Zagreb and 12 other feminists and members of various women’s organizations from Croatia have sued the columnist of Večernji list for slander and libel.
The female activists pressed charges against Ivkošić because of allegations in his “Patriotic naggings” column, published on June 14, 1998 in the daily newspaper Večernji list. In his description of the TV appearance of Radojka Borić, one of the plaintiffs, in the show “Press klub”, Ivkošić stated, among other things, that: “Mrs. Rada Borić openly defended the position of the Great Serbian fascist aggressor.”

The other 14 plaintiffs also pressed charges against Ivkošić because he had, in his depiction of the activities of the women’s organizations, stated that: “...they are more-or-less Croatian women who come from the Yugoslav Secret Police, Yugoslav Police and Yugo-military milieus”, with families connected to politics... who “primarily support non-Croatian women”. …”Although they are declaratively women’s organizations … with their degenerative activities towards women … and towards Croatia, they are actually expressing the degenerative level on which their collapsed … Great Serbian Yugoslavia has fallen, and for which they mourn”.