18 May 2017 Head of the National Assembly’s standing delegation to PACE Aleksandra Djurovic at the opening of the meeting of the Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights
Thursday, 18 May 2017
Meeting of PACE Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights in Belgrade
The Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) is having a meeting today in Belgrade, hosted by the National Assembly’s standing delegation to the international organization.
“Serbia’s chief foreign policy goal is EU accession, as well as good partnerships with eastern countries, improvement of cooperation with the countries in the region and regional stability. The process of European integration means the modernization of society according to European values for which we have the support of the European institutions and their approval that we are conducting the process the right way. In our efforts to modernize Serbian society the Council of Europe is a key factor, and the Serbian delegation to the PACE has become recognizable by its belief that dialogue can contribute to peace and stability”, said Djurovic.
She added that the National Assembly is the first in the fight for the rule of law, strengthening human rights, and was one of the first to ratify the Istanbul Convention. This is evidenced by the efforts of the Committee on Human and Minority Rights and Gender Equality and the Committee on the Rights of the Child, in addition to their legislative activity, to implement high European standards, and the work of the Women’s Parliamentary Network on the empowerment of women and improvement of their social status, stressed Djurovic.
“Europe today is faced by many challenges, first among them terrorism threatening innocent civilians, and we are especially worried by the Islamic fundamentalism in Kosovo-Metohija. That is why I fully endorse President Agramunt’s campaign “No Hate No Fear” which we were proud to promote last year in Belgrade. In these difficult times, Serbia continues on the path to European integration by strengthening democratic institutions and society, and in it we expect the support of PACE and all of its bodies”, said Djurovic.
In the introductory part the Committee members were addressed by Cedomir Backovic, Assistant Minister of Justice in charge of European integration and international projects, Natasa Plavsic, Deputy Public Attorney and Agent of the Republic of Serbia before the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, and Prof. Dr Dragoljub Popovic, former judge of the European Court of Human Rights.
Assistant Minister of Justice Cedomir Backovic said that the data on the implementation of the Chapter 23 action plans demonstrates that the state authorities are aware of the importance of conducting reforms in the judiciary, fight against corruption and protection of human rights, and that is also the case in the execution of judgments of the European Court of Human Rights.
“The execution of judgments means the implementation of a set of measures aimed at improving and harmonizing court practice, trial within reasonable time and protection of human rights. In addition, for Serbia the judgments also serve as guidelines for the social reform process”, said Backovic.
Natasa Plavsic, Deputy Public Attorney and Agent of the Republic of Serbia before the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, spoke about the actual execution of judgments, with a special focus on the Brussels Declaration passed in March 2015.
“The activities of the Republic of Serbia have been aimed at a swift execution of judgments, so that out of the 410 judgments against Serbia, 276 have been executed, and the Committee of Ministers commended the general measures employed by Serbia” said Plavsic.
Prof. Dr Dragoljub Popovic, former judge of the European Court of Human Rights, presented the 2013 case of Zorica Jovanovic versus Serbia, which he took part in, to the members of the Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights, where the judgment of the European Court of Human Rights has still not been executed.
More than 40 PACE members from 14 member states will be discussing reports on topics of interest to the Committee on Legal Affairs and Human Rights of the international organization, especially the Report on the execution of judgments of the European Court of Human Rights of rapporteur Pierre-Yves Le Borgn.