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Minister Vasko Simoniti: “Referring to an artistic act or an innocent metaphorical gesture is just a pretext. These people have, instead of a metaphor, engaged in a literal call for murder, for massacre.”

On Friday, 23th of October 2020, the Aktiv group of cultural workers placed a series of objects in front of the Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Slovenia, with a message conveying death threats aimed at Minister of Culture and his colleagues . The scene represents the office after the murder: tables sprinkled with red paint representing blood are placed on the street, and the names of co-workers are clearly written on the tables. Politics is expected to be tolerant of many provocations. But when it comes to death threats not only of politicians but also of officials doing their job, it needs to be made clear that things have gone too far.

The “performers” are anonymous disguising their identity with the name of a collective organization. These are people who, with their political collectivism and activism, attach themselves to totalitarian methods, avoid any responsibility and do not have the slightest bit of human empathy, let alone knowledge, talent or creativity.

Any reference to an artistic act or an innocent metaphorical gesture is merely a pretext. In art history, we there have been many artistic protests that have included symbolism, ambiguity or imagination in their expression. But the said group is not capable of that. These people chose a literal call for murder, for massacre, instead of a metaphor. This is not an artistic act at all, but an open and unequivocal threat of death. It is about pushing and consciously creating an atmosphere that encourages violence and general disorder. These are people who, while invoking democracy, abuse and destroy it by their actions, and are anti-democratic to their core.

They believe they are entitled to privileges

Clearly, they are supporters and members of some non-governmental organizations, which are otherwise generously supported by the state. These people are convinced that certain non-governmental organizations are entitled to compared-to-other-citizens immense privileges  for an indefinite period of time, without control and transparency. They are convinced that certain things simply belong to them, but this sense of superiority is unacceptable. The current Ministry of Culture believes that they are not entitled to these privileges, thus they are trying to limit them. NGO’s privileges have harmed top cultural institutions, which need suitable premises for their activities that some NGOs misappropriate and in its actions, the Ministry will take into account and respect all its legal powers and obligations.

Given the excesses in recent years when many acts of violence have taken place, the recent death threat to Minister of Culture and his staff must be a clear wake-up call to all institutions concerned with public order and the safety of citizens to take action. We are witnessing an extremely dangerous operation of an undemocratic group and we are urging the police to take immediate action and to identify, initiate all procedures for those who instigate people to commit violence and use death threats, and punish the perpetrators accordingly.



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