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Snap Elections Announced by Serbian President Vucic in Midst of Protests

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Serbia’s President, Aleksandar Vucic, said his country will hold early parliamentary elections, amid ongoing protests following two armed violence incidents.

He said it was clear that early parliamentary elections would take place, but he did not announce a date.

He said that after Prime Minister Ana Brnabić resigned from the assembly, he should present the mandate to someone else within the next 30 days.

“This means that we will dissolve the Serbian parliament soon because there are deadlines,” Vucic said.

“When it is proved that there is no majority in the Assembly of Serbia, if there is no majority, then it is possible for someone else to achieve the majority, if it turns out that this is not possible, because if Ana Brnabić resigns, the Serbian Progressive Party will not want a new mandate, this is understandable” .

Early elections mean that voters will go to the polls for the third time in four years.

Vucic and the government have come under pressure in recent weeks after mass shootings in the capital, Belgrade.

Thousands of people demonstrated in the streets, calling for Vucic’s resignation.

Opposition demonstrators are calling for the resignation of senior government officials and the revocation of broadcasting licenses for two pro-government television networks, which they say encourage violence and glorify crime figures.

A new protest is scheduled for this weekend in what has become an increasingly serious challenge to Vucic, and may be the biggest he has faced since coming to power 11 years ago.

The shootings on May 3 and 4 stunned the nation, because the first occurred in an elementary school in central Belgrade when a 13-year-old boy took his father’s gun and opened fire on fellow students. Eight students and a school guard were killed and seven others were injured. Another girl later died in hospital from head injuries.

A day later, a 20-year-old used an automatic weapon to indiscriminately target people in two villages south of Belgrade, killing eight people and wounding 14 others.

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