No, protests in Serbia are not against Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić's connection with WEF

By: Rajini KG
June 14 2023

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No, protests in Serbia are not against Serbian President Aleksandar Vučić's connection with WEF


The Verdict False

These protests are against the government’s policies on gun violence after the country witnessed two mass shootings in May 2023.

Claim ID 2e1f3742


A picture of a large crowd gathering on a bridge is circulating on Facebook with the caption, "The world is reaching a fever pitch against these globalists. This is Serbia-Belgrade protest last week. People demanding the President to step down for his connections with the WEF (World Economic Forum)." 

Multiple users have shared different images of recent protests in Serbia, claiming they are protesting against Serbian president Aleksandar Vučić over his links to the WEF.

However, this claim is false.

In Fact

The viral social media post shows an image of protestors protesting in Belgrade. Through a reverse image search, we identified the location in the photo as the Gazela Bridge in Belgrade. Stock photograph website Shutterstock published a similar image, taken from a different angle, which was taken on May 19, captioned "19th May 2023. Protest against the violence in Belgrade, Serbia. Moment where protestors are crossing Gazela bridge." Features found in both the viral image and Shutterstock's image, such as the two blackboard structures placed in the middle of the bridge and a round structure near the bridge, indicate that the photos are likely to be of the same event.

Protests have erupted in Serbia but have nothing to do with the World Economic Forum. Mass demonstrations are being held condemning the government and its policies on guns or arms after the country witnessed two mass shootings in May 2023. The first incident occurred on May 3, 2023, when a 13-year-old boy shot eight students and a security guard at a primary school in the Belgrade district of Vracar. The second incident occurred on May 5, 2023, when a 21-year-old shot eight people in a village outside Belgrade. 

According to Deutsche Welle, thousands of protesters gathered in Belgrade on May 19, 2023, to march against the violence in the nation. Along with the protesters, opposition parties criticized the government for failing to take action against socially harmful criminal organizations and violent TV shows and networks. But the President condemned the Opposition for giving mass shootings a political angle.

Associated Press reported that on June 9, 2023, thousands of protesters congregated in Belgrade's downtown. Since the mass shootings in Serbia, this is the sixth protest. It states that the protesters urged the government to comply with their demands as quickly as possible and threatened to become radicalized if their demands were not met. 

They have demanded the resignation of President Aleksandar Vučić, Interior Minister Bratislav Gasic, and Secret Service Chief Aleksandar Vulin and the revocation of the national broadcasting rights for pro-government TV stations that promote violence. Reuters and Sky News Australia report the same. 

Aleksandar Vučić has been the President of Serbia since 2017 and has been an active participant in the meetings of the World Economic Forum. However, there is no evidence that the recent protests in Serbia are over Vučić links with WEF. Social media users falsely linked Serbia protests to WEF and the Great Reset conspiracy theory, which is believed to be that global elites allegedly plan to take control over the world.

The Verdict

Serbians are protesting nationwide over the government's policies on gun violence. The protests are unrelated to the World Economic Forum. Therefore, we have marked this claim as false. 

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Global Fact-Checks Completed

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