The Constitution of the Republic of Serbia, in force since 2006, was not only adopted contrary to the rules of democratic procedures, but is also replete with major technical, linguistic and legal deficiencies. These deficiencies of the Constitution led to continuation of the Constitutional debate instead of stopping it and consolidating Serbian society. Today, 12 years after the adoption of the Constitution, Serbia is again in the “Constitutional momentum” discussing the amendments to the Constitution. It is essential to shed more light and explain in simple language understandable to citizens the connection between process of EU accession and the change of the Constitution. Furthermore, the constitutional revision must ensure rule of law and advantages on the individual level that will be gained by Serbian citizens, particularly by having independent judiciary. Project is continuation of the EMinS long-lasting advocacy efforts on Constitutional changes, but the current one is directly focused on supporting the transformation and development of independent judiciary in Serbia through amending the Constitution.

Overall goal is to contribute to a better and fact based discussion on EU accession of Republic of Serbia through advocating the amending of the Constitution. Specific objectives is: (a) to build public support for Constitutional revision, enabling independence of the judiciary, that will make a turning point in the EU accession process of Serbia; (b) to promote public support for independence of the judiciary and influence the media to cover the issue and better understand it.

Project activities are developed to inform general public on the meaning, values and requirements for independent judiciary in Serbia. Campaigning is the core of all activities and encompasses:  writing of policy brief, articles and micro blogs and distribution through online media and traditional ones, debriefing with journalist, as well as, debating in vivo with citizens. Six (6) local public debates on Constitutional challenges in Sremska Mitrovica, Kraljevo, Leskovac, Zajecar, Kruševac, Subotica, will be organized, all followed by meetings with local journalists and media appearance in media. Up to ten (10) articles on most important Constitutional issues regarding independent judiciary will be written by distinguished national experts and widely distributed. EMinS social networks will be used for intensive online campaign.

Project duration: 1 August 2018 till 31 March 2019.

The project is supported by the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to Serbia, as part of the MATRA program of the Dutch Ministry for Foreign Affairs.

Opinions and attitudes expressed on this webpage, as well as all electronic and printed material related to the project are opinions and attitudes of the author and his/her colleagues and as such, do not necessarily represent either the official opinion of the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands to Serbia, or the opinion of the Dutch Ministry for Foreign Affairs.

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