Council of Europe abolished monitoring for Montenegro

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Podgorica, January 29, 2015/ Independent Balkan News Agency

By Adnan Prekic

After eight years, the Council of Europe stopped the monitoring of Montenegro. In the opinion of deputies in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, Montenegro has made significant progress, but some measure of control will still exist, so the Council of Europe will remain. If Montenegro by the end of 2017 does not meet the criteria of the Council Resolution that are pertaining to freedom of media judicial independence and the financing of political parties and campaigns, it will be returned in the monitoring process.

The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe with 66 votes in favor and one abstention vote adopted a resolution repealing the monitoring, which was introduced in Montenegro in 2007. Until 2017, Montenegro will be in the so called post-monitoring dialogue. Rapporteur of the for Montenegro Kimo Sasi said that the Council of Europe has drawn a map and if Montenegro can not be monitored it will be returned back to the monitoring process.

One of the deputies of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, which is preparing a resolution, Terry Leyden, said that the Council wants to the strengthening of the independence of the judiciary. “Several important laws in parliament must be fully in compliance with the recommendations of the Venice Commission. “The position of newly elected Supreme Public Prosecutor must be strengthened”, said Leyden.

The Council of Europe has announced that special attention must be focused on the issues of media freedom. The British representative in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe Christopher Coup said that there are concerns about the misuse of state resources. “It’s not enough to say that we expect to regulate party financing”, pointed out Christopher Coup.

French representative Bemar Fumia said that Montenegro has demonstrated courage when it comes to the relationship with Russia, by supporting EU sanctions. He said that the erroro in judgment in the case of Zavala is a bad sign and that may bring up the issue of corruption in the judiciary.

The British representative in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe Christopher Coup said that there are concerns about the misuse of state resources.

The representative of Austria Edgar Meyer said that there must be necessary actions when it comes to the independence of the judiciary. “The law on the fight against corruption must be applied in the right way, because there is a serious problem with corruption and organised crime”, Mayer stressed.

Source: Independent Balkan News Agency (Montenegro)