Podgorica, Montenegro (20 April 2015) – All key claims published by Montenegro’s daily DAN on 20 April 2015 in the newspaper article entitled “Milo fakes research data about NATO,” according to which the Government and the Prime Minister allegedly presented to the public incorrect information about opinion polls related to Montenegro’s membership in NATO, are false.
The following statements from the article are incorrect:
1. “the Government hid the survey”;
2. “the Government requested IPSOS to do the survey”;
3. the Prime Minister “faked the research data”;
4. “IPSOS’s opinion poll of November 2014 was conducted for the Government”;
5. the research which the daily DAN states ”has been submitted to Prime Minister Đukanović and the Council for NATO Membership”;
6. the research “proves that the executive authorities communicated false information about the citizens’ attitude to the public”;
7. ”the inaccurate data were communicated to the public”;
8. the research “was done solely for the purposes of the Government”;
9. “from November to March, there was no public opinion polls regarding the attitudes of the citizens towards NATO integration”;
10.”the data deny the Prime Minister’s claim that the number of opponents of NATO membership is decreasing,” etc.
The data, which parts the daily DAN published on Monday, are part of the results of a comprehensive and complex public opinion research conducted for the purposes of the Communication Team of the Council for NATO Membership in order to inform the team about attitude and way of thinking primarily of the Montenegrin citizens who are not quite familiar with the advantages of our country’s accession to NATO, and who, therefore, oppose Montenegro’s membership in the Alliance.
On the other hand, the monthly opinion polls, which are conducted on a regular basis, show that the Prime Minister gave the correct answer to the parliamentary question posed within the Questions to the Prime Minister institution. Moreover, the latest research shows that the public confidence continues to grow following the Prime Minister’s response.
All this would have been presented to the daily DAN, if the media, pursuant to the Code of Journalists of Montenegro, had addressed the Communication Team of the Council for NATO Membership or the Public Relations Bureau of the Government of Montenegro before having written the article. Having in mind that reporters and editors of this and other media regularly address the Public Relations Bureau of the Government of Montenegro by e-mail, sms sent from mobile phones or by phone calls during and outside working hours, late at night, and, given that we have always met their requests, and that the claims could have been verified, it is clear that the aim of the article was not to state facts.
The Communication Team of the Council for NATO Membership and Public Relations Bureau of the Government do not consider it meaningful to send the correction to the daily DAN, as it is the media’s common practice to publish falsehoods on the front page, and, then, contrary to the Law on Media, to push the corrections in corners. Therefore, the correction is primarily aimed at informing domestic and international public and the media which may have published the daily DAN’s claims.
COMMUNICATION TEAM OF THE COUNCIL FOR NATO MEMBERSHIP
PUBLIC RELATIONS BUREAU OF THE GOVERNMENT OF MONTENEGRO
Source: Government of Montenegro