A 25-year-old police officer has been suspended after admitting that he personally tore down one of the controversial dual alphabet (latin and Serbian Cyrillic) sign which were recently erected on official buildings in the Croatian city of Vukovar on Monday night.
After six officers were suspended from duty on Tuesday for suspicion of being involved in the vandalism, officer Igor Gilja has admitted that he assisted in the tearing down of the signs, which have caused problems since going up on official buildings early last month. Hundreds of people waited outside the Vukovar police station on Tuesday night and gave Gilja a heroes welcome when he was released, reports daily 24sata.
With the other 5 police officers only suspended for not preventing the signs being ripped off the buildings, police will charge Gilja with a criminal offence because he personally took part in the removal of the dual alphabet signs.
“He is the son of a deceased war veteran, his emotions ran high and he done something silly which he unfortunately has to pay for. I am glad that he was released because we wont stand for anyone being locked up,” said Vukovar defenders president Tomislav Josic on Croatian Television.
As reported yesterday, 7 of the 8 signs were ripped off government buildings, leaving only one sign, on the city police station, in tact. Around 30 armed police officers were guarding each of the 8 signs on buildings around the city centre after protestors damaged signs when they were first put up last month.