Serbia was granted EU candidate status in March 2012 and has so far opened ten and closed two acquis chapters. According to the Action Plan that the Government has adopted for the acquis chapter 23- Judiciary & Fundamental Rights, which was opened on 18 July 2016, Serbia is to amend its Constitution by the end of 2017. The Ministry of Justice of the Republic of Serbia has announced earlier that their proposal for amendments to the Constitution would concern the judiciary.
Judges’ Association of Serbia, Prosecutors Association of Serbia, CEPRIS Center for Judicial Research, Lawyers’ Committee for Human Rights and Belgrade Centre for Human Rights have issued a joint statement calling the Ministry to perform the proper public consultations, circulate constitutional amendments proposal for comments and postpone the deadline for amending the Constitution.
The Belgrade Centre for Human Rights, one of the signatories of the joint statement, is a non-partisan and non-profit association, established in 1995 and recognized as one of the most important and most influential non-governmental organizations in Serbia, with the advancement of knowledge in the field of human rights and humanitarian law, development of democracy, strengthening of the rule of law and the civil society in Serbia and other countries in transition from authoritarianism to democracy among its principal goals.
Živković Samardžić Technology, Media and Telecommunications Associate Miloš Stojković, who was a project coordinator and researcher for the Belgrade Centre for Human Rights prior to joining the firm, is currently a member of the organization’s Managing Board. Besides Miloš, some of the other Board members are Vesna Pešić, sociologist, one of the leaders of opposition movement in Serbia in the 1990s, a former member of Parliament and an ambassador and Dubravka Stojanović, historian, professor at University of Belgrade Faculty of Philosophy.