Serbian officials praise award for Handke

In an interview with Serbia’s state TV earlier this year Handke said: “Those who bombed and killed thousands of people don’t belong to Europe and the planet earth.”

10 October 2019 | 17:43

Source: Associated Press

  • Source: Associated Press
  • Last update: 10 October 2019 | 17:43

In this March 23, 2016 photo Austrian author Peter Handke arrives for an award ceremony in Stuttgart, Germany. The winner of the 2019 Nobel Prize in literature is Austrian author Peter Handke. (AP Photo)

STOCKHOLM: Serbian media and officials are praising Peter Handke for winning the Nobel Prize in literature, describing him as a “great friend” of the Serbs.

The Austrian writer was an opponent of NATO’s airstrikes against Serbia in the Kosovo war of the late 1990s and spoke in 2006 at the funeral of autocratic Serbian leader Slobodan Milosevic. In his support for Milosevic’s regime, Handke came to Belgrade during the bombing.

In an interview with Serbia’s state TV earlier this year Handke said: “Those who bombed and killed thousands of people don’t belong to Europe and the planet earth.”

He has also denied that genocide was committed when Bosnian Serb troops massacred some 8,000 Bosnian Muslim men and boys in the enclave of Srebrenica during the Bosnian war in the 1990s — something ruled genocide by the U.N. war crimes court in several convictions of top Bosnian Serb wartime commanders and political leaders.

Handke claimed that the Muslims had staged their own massacres in the besieged Bosnian capital, Sarajevo, and blamed this on the Serbs.

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