T-SHIRTS: The international language of protest

Imagine stepping onto the field to play soccer as the opposing team comes out wearing t-shirts with the face of a war criminal convicted of killing more than 100,000 people during Bosnia’s 1990s War.

Members of the Red Star Belgrade football team stepped onto the field just four days after former Bosnian Serb General, Ratko Mladic, was convicted at the Hague for crimes against humanity. The conflict was in part related to the break up of Yugoslavia and the multi-ethnic population of Serbs, Croats and Bosniaks (Bosnian Muslims) who attempted to take control. Of the more than 100,000 that died, 80 percent were said to be Bosniaks.

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Mladic sent the team a letter two days after his conviction, “Love yourselves and your athletic rivals! May our matches and contests be accompanied by song and joy,” and so it was, but it was an insult that resulted in the Novi Sad branch of the League of Social Democrats of Vojvodina, calling for sanctions against the football club for the “promotion of hatred and crimes will not be tolerated”

 

 

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