30 June 2022

On June 29, 2022, the Deputy Protector of Citizens, Nataša Tanjević, PhD, and her colleagues from the National Preventive Mechanism (NPM), held a meeting with representatives of the Ministry of Interior, the Commission for the implementation of standards of police conduct in the area of torture prevention. The purpose of the meeting was to maintain continuous dialogue and cooperation regarding possible measures to implement the NPM recommendations, exchange information and improve cooperation in the field of torture prevention.

Tanjević, PhD, pointed out the key observations of the NPM monitoring teams during their visits to police administrations, that is, police stations within their composition, since the beginning of the year, the recommendations issued, the improvements observed. Further activities in that area were discussed, that is, the need for further improvements, especially in terms of exercising the right of access to a defence attorney.

The president of the commission presented the activities undertaken by the MoI in order to further improve the conditions of stay in detention facilities, as well as activities related to equipping hearing rooms with technical equipment for video and/or audio recording of hearings. He also presented the activities and results achieved within the Council of Europe project "Strengthening the protection of human rights of persons deprived of their liberty and convicted persons in Serbia", especially with regard to the preparation of the Rulebook and guidelines for conducting informative interviews with different categories of persons. The president of the commission also stated that, in accordance with the recommendations of the NPM, the improved version of the application on apprehended and detained persons will begin to be implemented from July.

The participants of the meeting agreed on the need to improve the cooperation of the MoI with the Ministry of Health in order to standardize the forms that are filled out after the examination of persons deprived of their liberty, as well as to organize, in cooperation with the Ministry of Health, training for health workers on the performance of examinations of persons deprived of their liberty, which, according to the president of the commission, will be realized within the aforementioned project.

Cooperation with representatives of the Commission for the implementation of standards of police conduct in the area of torture prevention represents an example of good practice, when it comes to continuous dialogue with the NPM, aimed at implementing the issued recommendations and improving the situation in this area.