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Mr Milutinovic presented Mr Higgins with the cheque of 20,000.00 € and the gold coin with image of late Dusko Jovanovic, the only journalist murdered in Montenegro.

American journalist Mr Andrew Higgins received the First International Award of the Foundation Dusko Jovanovic last night. He expressed pride of being the first journalist who received the award established in memory of murdered editor and director of Dan.

The editor- in-chief of Dan Mr Mladen Milutinovic presented the Award to Mr Higgins on the seventh anniversary of Jovanovic's murder saying the Award should be an encouragement to all journalists in Montenegro. Mr Milutinovic presented American journalist with the cheque of 20,000.00€ and the gold coin with image of late Dusko Jovanovic, the only journalist murdered in Montenegro, whose murder has remained unsolved after seven years.

The guests of the ceremony, held at hotel Podgorica, were media representatives, foreign ambassadors, including Mr Leopold Maurer, Mr Peter Plate and Mr Martin Pamer, leaders of political parties, editorial staff of Dan and five Jury members for the Award.

Higgins has told Dan how proud he is of winning the award in a very tough competition.
- It was a great surprise for me. However, in times when journalism becomes more and more complicated profession, this Award represents affirmation of investigative journalism, and that is more important than the fact I have won it. It is dangerous to be investigative journalist in almost all parts of the world. That is why this Award is important- Higgins said.

The guest of the ceremony was the former Montenegrin President Mr Momir Bulatovic, whose words were read.

- There are people who are gifted more than others by God or destiny. It is a pleasure to see and hear them. They are set on the right path and have a special strength and momentum to accomplish more than others. They are excelled and recognized in every society. They are numerous in fortunate countries and societies and their personal burdens are less heavy. In other countries, you can every now and then find an individual with these abilities. Without other options, he carries heavy burden on his shoulders, and sooner or later buckles under and doesn't fulfil his true wish. The situation is even worse in Montenegro, the country surrounded by unfavourable domestic and external circumstances.
Not only are there a few of them but as soon as someone steps in their way others put an effort to obstruct. After the cowardly assassination, we said goodbye to Mr Dusko Jovanovic, beautiful Montenegrin, who was predestined to succeed and to be remembered. These words were written about late director of Dan.

Dusko's wife Slavica Jovanovic told that the Foundation received Higgins' work at the suggestion of The Washington Post editor Mr Douglas Jehl. Mr Higgins applied for the Award with series of articles:
- Afghan authorities take over biggest bank to avoid meltdown
- Officials puzzle over millions of dollars in cash, leaving Afghanistan by plane for Dubai
- Kabul Bank crisis followed U.S. push for clean up
- Pricey real estate deals in Dubai raise questions about Azerbaijan's president
- Kyrgyz contracts fly under the radar

Mrs Slavica Jovanovic thanked candidates and jury members of the Foundation Dusko Jovanovic saying they did everything to make the Award prestigious.

- I would like to thank everyone who contributed to the Award in any way. When the Award was announced four years ago, many people helped us present it properly and now we have this beautiful evening as a crown. If Dusko was with us today, I'm sure he would remain consistent despite the sacrifice he would have to make. He knew that society brutally deals with those who think with their own heads - said Mrs Slavica Jovanovic.

She reminded of Honore de Balzac's words- The human heart has a limit for love, but there is no limit for hatred.

- In our hearts, Vojin and I feel endless love for his father and my husband. We left hate to others. We are pursuing other paths and our son will conquer places without violence, hate and primitivism always bearing in mind that you are not anything of a man if you have lost your soul along the way – Mrs Slavica Jovanovic concluded.

Support to Investigative Journalism

Twenty-seven works across the world were submitted to the contest of the Foundation Dusko Jovanovic, seven of them in narrow selection. Jury member, British journalist, Mr Nick Davies has said that investigative journalism is in crisis due to its risky nature because powerful people don't like journalists writing about them and with the internet taking place of print media.

- I am happy to be here because as a Jury member I have heard a lot of amazing stories. My satisfaction would be complete if at least dozens of journalists had won the Award- said Davies.

The second Jury member Ms Verica Spasovska has said that unsolved murder of Dusko Jovanovic is a scandal and praised the winning work.

- We should do everything to promote investigative journalism, which we really need- Ms Spasovska said.

Phd. Blagota Mitric expressed his honour of being the third Jury member.

- Even though the winning work is about Afghanistan, its topic is universal and it could be reflected in our region- Mr Mitric said.

Director of Reporters Without Borders Mr Olivier Bassile, due to his prior commitments, didn't attend the ceremony. The fifth Jury member was Mrs Slavica Jovanovic. All works will be published in Dan and collected in special publication.

Proud to had Dusko as a friend

Mr Mladen Milutinovic, editor-in-chief of Dan, expressed his pride of being Dusko Jovanovic's friend.

-In memory of Dusko Jovanovic, a great fighter for freedom of public speech, the family, friends and colleagues commemorate this day, while the state officials hold their heads down. For obvious reason, almost nothing was done to find perpetrators and masterminds of the murder of the only Montenegrin journalist whose investigative articles were written by his own blood – Mr Mladen Milutinovic said.

- I am very proud of the fact that Dusko and I were best friends. We were together through misfortunes and sufferings, learning from each other. I believe that was one of the reasons why Dan has succeeded to survive the tragedy from 2004. I spend my life in a coordinate system marked by two happy and two sad occasions. Births of my daughter Anja and Dusko's son Vojin, born after his death, have eased the pain of the great loss of my father Vasilije and my friend Dusko Jovanovic.
Dear Vojin, I am both happy and sad to be here. It would have been better if we were with Dusko, spending time together.

Bloodied hands took your father's life but I am proud of this Foundation, you as its founder together with your mother Slavica and all of us, who have managed to organize such prestigious ceremony. I believe Dusko would be proud of us as we are proud of him- Mr Milutinovic concluded.

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