Swedish Broadcasting Commission approves hate speech against Serbs

The organisation Justitia Pax Veritas (JPV) on Wednesday handed in a request to the Swedish Broadcasting Commission to review its acquittal of an insert regarding the Pride Parade in Belgrade which was aired on Swedish Radio in the beginning of October. According to the organisation, the commission applied, in several regards, a wrongful set of regulations violating its own praxis.

JPV finds it illogical that the commission deems the case to be neither of great matter nor of principal importance. The insert received attention both in Sweden as well as abroad with some 30 complaints being filed and several principally important subjects being brought forward. The matter has, nonetheless, been handled and determined by merely a second vice-chairman, which is an obvious violation of the regulations regarding the notion of quorum in the Radio and TV law, according to JPV.

In its request JPV states that the commission, in violation of praxis, has not applied the so called democracy provision which implies an obligation of clear dissociation from visibly offensive statements made about an ethnic group. The organization emphasizes that the provision should be applied equally, regardless of who the target of such demeaning statements is, and stresses that the same restrictions to freedom of speech should be applied to both the elite as well as ordinary people.

The radio morning programme of P1, Swedish Radio, was aired in the beginning of October and focused on this year’s Pride Parade in Belgrade. The programme, in which offensive statements were made about Serbs and the Serbian Orthodox Church, was guested by Robert Hårdh from the Civil Rights Defenders and Stina Magnusson Buur from the organisation ‘Kvinna till Kvinna’ (Woman to Woman). The insert has upset many Swedes with Serbian descent and about 30 complaints have been filed to the Swedish Broadcasting Commission which in the end of December acquitted the insert.

Justitia Pax Veritas