Violence Within State Borders: Serbia

This report is the product of the Border Violence Monitoring Networkʼs (BVMN) efforts to document violence occurring against people-on-the-move (herein POM) within the borders of countries along the Balkan Route. In addition to identifying cross- border pushbacks, BVMN collects evidence of physical, material, and structural violence against POM within Serbia. The quantitative and
qualitative data included in this report was collected via questionnaire from volunteers who interacted daily with POM in cities such as Belgrade, Subotica, Majdan and Šid. Additionally, information was drawn from the testimonies of POM and from the observations of long-term volunteers and activists, which collectively illustrate the complex factors influencing the well-being of POM in Serbia.

Through analysis of data collected in the field, the first section of this report will discuss acts of physical violence against POM. The second will examine violence inflicted by law enforcement officers and members of extremist right-wing political groups, while the third will report instances of structural violence, a term that refers to the development or perpetuation of inequality by social institutions or processes. Specific examples of structural violence reported by POM and the organizations which support them include restricted access to asylum, collective expulsions, evictions, harassment, and criminalization of solidarity.