The Team of Experts is the main body for co-ordinating and implementing the planned activities.
The Team of Experts will be directly engaged in analysing existing legislation, proposing legislative changes and new policies to the government, the media, political parties, NGOs and other bodies which influence public opinion, with the goal of ensuring that these measures are implemented.
It is going to monitor the implementation and results of the project and proposed solutions; discussing and drawing conclusions about the most important questions of democratisation and legislative reform in Montenegro, above all with respect to the building of democratic institutions, the training of government officials and NGO activists in the protection of human rights and national minorities;
Methods of realisation
The Team of Experts will hold meetings whenever necessary. Working groups will be formed or individual members of the Expert Team will be given responsibility for analysing certain questions and preparing material for discussion at these meetings.
- Training for protection of human and minority rights
This activity will be aimed at the following target groups:
- the President of Montenegro and his office, the Montenegrin Government and officials of the Montenegrin Parliament;
- leaders of political parties;
- chief editors, foreign and domestic policy editors, journalists and columnists;
- judges and lawyers involved in the protection of human rights and freedoms.
The goals are:
- to acquaint these target groups with the latest knowledge of eminent domestic and international experts, particularly the specialists of the OSCE, EU, COE and UN, in the field of human rights;
- to raise the level of knowledge and ability of those involved in the protection of human and minority rights;
- to establish informal working relationships between experts from Montenegro and international organisations.
Within the framework of these activities, particular attention will be devoted to the following:
- the democratisation of post-communist societies and ethnic relations;
- human rights and freedoms in multi-ethnic societies;
- international protection of human rights;
- solving conflicts through negotiation and dialogue;
- the importance of international cooperation and support in the democratisation of post-communist societies;
- ethno-religious identity and human rights;
- the Serbian-Albanian conflict from a regional perspective;
- special problems of the establishment of democratic institutions in societies divided by ethnic conflicts and war;
- the institutional and legal preconditions for establishing a market economy a stable parliamentary system;
- strategies of facing the consequences of conflict (victims of war, refugees, displaced persons, terrorism, etc.).
Method of realisation
These goals will be implemented through a series of lectures, round tables, journalistic workshops, etc.
The program and working plan will be developed by the Center for Democracy and Human Rights (CEDEM) from Podgorica.
- Modernisation and innovations of legislation for the protection of human and minority rights
The existing constitutional and legal system in Montenegro provides possibilities for the greater protection of human and minority rights, especially with regard to the mechanisms (institutions and procedures) of protection.
The following steps are needed in order to modernise and amend the current legislation in this field:
- analysis of the existing constitutional and legal framework in Montenegro in the field of human rights and definition of the status of minority communities and instruments for their protection;
- analysis of the legal framework in the FR Yugoslavia and comparison with the situation in the Republic of Montenegro;
- analysis of relevant international instruments (charters, conventions, resolutions, etc.);
- basic guidelines and concrete measures for the modernisation of the legal system in Montenegro and its harmonisation with international standards (“The Framework for the New Policy of Support for Freedoms and Rights of Montenegrin Citizens” and “Guidelines for a New Minority Policy”);
- drafting the general framework for relevant laws and regulations (such as a law on the ombudsman, a constitutional law on minority rights, etc.);
- adequate training for government officials, MPs, activists of NGOs and journalists involved in the promotion of human rights issues.
Method of realisation
These goals would be realised through the Expert Team.
International professional law organisations (such as the American Bar Association) would be engaged as consultants.
- Training programs
- Human Rights Lawyers
An educational program for lawyers specialising in the implementation and protection of human rights
Basic political, legal, economic and social conditions exist in Montenegro for the achievement of international standards in the protection and promotion of human rights. There are numerous aspects to the processes related to the promotion and protection of human rights, including the systematic and long-term education of members of the legal profession, primarily attorneys. This is particularly important because attorneys deal with the practical implementation of law and the protection of human rights of their clients.
The training would help overcome the existing shortage of specialists in this field and would also play a positive role in revitalising the legal system, in particular by giving judicial institutions, such as regular and constitutional courts, prosecution offices and other governmental bodies a more active role in ensuring respect for the constitutional principles of the division of power and rule of law, as well as the establishment of a modern and efficient state in Montenegro.
The curriculum of this educational program will comprise two teaching units: an examination of the general features of specific aspects of human rights within the framework of certain legal disciplines; and the second dealing with certain important issues and documents relating to human rights and freedoms.
The first teaching unit will deal with the following themes:
- an introduction to human rights and freedoms;
- human rights and criminal proceedings;
- international standards of human rights;
- human rights and electoral procedures;
- the constitutional and judicial protection of human rights;
- human rights and judicial procedures;
- human rights and administrative procedures.
The second teaching unit will deal with the following themes:
- legal documents regulating the field of human rights;
- war crimes and crimes against humanity;
- the International Criminal Tribunal for War Crimes in the Former Yugoslavia in the Hague;
- the Permanent International Criminal Court;
- the status of refugees and protection of their rights;
- regulation of the right to citizenship.
Methods of realisation
This project will be realised by the CEDEM and ABA.
During the course of the project support will be given to the establishment of two NGOs: the Montenegrin Lawyers for Human Rights and the Montenegrin Committee of Lawyers for Human Rights.
The Coordinator of the Educational Program will be Aleksa Ivanovic.
The main lecturers will be eminent domestic and foreign lawyers and other specialists in human rights and freedoms, including Srdjan Darmanovic, Slobodan Franovic, Dr Momcilo Grubac, Dr Dusan Janjic, Dr Nathan Lenner, Constitutional Court Judge Slobodan Vucetic and Dr Nebojsa Vucinic.
The program will be organised as a series of semi-intensive courses, for example, groups of four classes on Friday afternoon and four classes on Saturday morning. The program will last for a total of 80 teaching classes or ten weeks. Three courses will be held each year with 25 students attending. Students will receive certificates on completion of the course.
- Public relations
The Project will require communication with the general public, as well as certain target groups (ethnic, religious and cultural minorities), the media, academics and researchers, similar NGOs, political parties, influential public figures, governments, state institutions, diplomatic missions and social and cultural institutions.
The basic goals of this communication will be: to compare the results of research and discoveries in the field of ethnic relations and protection of minority rights; the coordination of academic research teams; support for communication and mutual cooperation; the development and improvement of communication in conflict environments; the initiation and expansion of multidisciplinary exchanges with the goal of democratising society and particularly ethnic relations; the initiation and expansion of communication between similar NGOs; the creation of possibilities and demonstration of the need for international exchanges of knowledge and communication between academics and experts; the establishment of inter-ethnic links benefiting both sides; the identification and recording in a “blue dossier” of circumstances and actions which can escalate into inter-ethnic and inter-confessional conflict and endanger human rights; and the opening of communication in crisis situations; and influencing the introduction of a coherent communication strategy aimed at democratising ethnic relations and protecting national, confessional and cultural minorities.
Method of realisation
The program will take the form of:
- publication of a regular bulletin “Minority Wauch” in Serbo-Croatian and English;
- cooperation with TV and radio stations, including joint video and audio productions;
- the publication of the “blue dossier”;
- the publication of books, journals and leaflets;
- public promotions;
- institutional promotions;
- publicity events;
- press conferences.