Wednesday, 13 January 2016

47th Sitting of the Defence and Internal Affairs Committee

At the sitting held on 13 January, the members of the Defence and Internal Affairs Committee discussed the Bill on Police, Bill on Public Peace and Order and the Public Assembly Bill, in principle.


The bills were elaborated by Minister of Interior Dr Nebojsa Stefanovic.

The Bill on Police is a new, fundamental law, regulating the work of the police and introducing many innovations in a number of areas, said Stefanovic. He emphasised that the Bill raises the employment criteria, sets the groundwork for career development and introduces a new sector for international cooperation and European affairs. The Bill enables a new organisational structure in the Ministry of Interior i.e. a new job systematisation and the introduction of new unit headquarters, Stefanovic added. It will also enable budgetary projections and risk assessment as basics of the planning process in the Ministry. Some of the innovations concern the definition of police measures and actions, new jobs and their standardisations, as well as a new structure of the special forces. Minister Stefanovic added that the Bill also allow for more frequent security assessments of police officers, and enables internal control to use new instruments to eradicate corruption in the Ministry.

Following a debate the Committee members accepted the Bill on Police, in principle.

Speaking of the Bill on Public Peace and Order, Minister Stefanovic stressed that the law currently in force was passed in 1992. The Bill submitted for debate adequately follows the modern practices and changes which had occurred in the normative regulation of the area. It defines new offenses and introduces new punitive measures, with a special focus on the protection of children and youth i.e. misdemeanours committed in hospitality facilities or concerning the abuse of children or youth.

By majority vote, the Committee accepted this Bill as well, in principle.

The Public Assembly Bill defines the terms of assembly, location, organiser, and their rights and obligations, said the Minister of Interior. According to the Bill, any and all open-air assemblies should be registered and it also defines all the duties of the organisers concerning the assembly and their responsibility for the safety of the participants i.e. their safe arrival and departure from the assembly. The Minister stressed that everybody has the right to assembly provided that, pursuant to the Bill, it does not in any way jeopardise the rights of other citizens. Assemblies in front of institutions are allowed, but may be limited in the case of buildings of great importance, added Stefanovic. He stressed that this Bill too stands shoulder to shoulder with European laws of the same kind.

Following a short debate, this Bill too was accepted in principle, by majority vote.

The sitting was attended by Committee members and deputy members Goran Bogdanovic, Aleksandar Markovic, Dubravka Filipovski, Suzana Sarac, Zivan Djurisic, Mirko Cikiriz, Nenad Nikolic, Milos Tosanic, Vanja Vukic, Dargan Sutanovac, Zoran Babic, Stefana Miladinovic, Konstantin Arsenovic and Bojan Kostres.

The sitting was chaired by Committee Chairperson Marija Obradovic.

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