Today marks the 22nd anniversary of the large demonstrations in Belgrade that on October 5, 2000 ended the rule of the President of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY), Slobodan Milosevic.
The demonstrations broke out after Milosevic refused to recognize the results of the presidential vote.
In the September 24, 2000, presidential elections Milosevic lost to Vojislav Kostunica, the candidate of the DOS (Democratic Opposition of Serbia) and leader of the Democratic Part of Serbia (DSS).
Protesters from all over Serbia came to the capital in kilometers-long convoys of cars, busses and trucks, pushing their way through the police road blocks with bulldozers and assembling outside the Federal Parliament. The police used teargas to disperse the crowd and prevent the protesters from breaking into the Parliament building, yet the building was demolished and a part of it was set on fire. Shortly afterwards, police stopped resisting and most of them joined the protesters.
Newly elected president Kostunica appeared on the balcony of the Belgrade City Hall across the street from the Parliament building on the evening of October 5 and Milosevic conceded electoral defeat the next day.
The only casualty in the demonstrations was a young woman who was run over by a truck, while 65 people were injured.
Vojislav Kostunica eventually withdrew from politics, while Prime Minister Zoran Djindjic, a DOS leader, was assassinated on March 12, 2003.
Slobodan Milosevic died in 2006 at The Hague Tribunal’s detention centre.
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