News

08 Jul 2020, 20:52 PM

July 8, 2020 - On 8th May, the United Nations (UN) Special Rapporteurs on the right to physical and mental health, the right to privacy and the right to freedom of opinion and expression sent a letter to the Government of Montenegro expressing concern over the publication on the government website of the full names and addresses of individuals in mandatory self-isolation of 14 days due to coronavirus, Human Rights Action (HRA) announced today. HRA emphasized that although an additional statement of the Government was requested on certain controversial issues, it did not respond within the 60-day deadline, which expired yesterday.

“The questions of the rapporteurs addressed to the Government refer to: clarification of the legal basis in domestic law for publishing personal data of persons in self-isolation, necessity and proportionality of measures taken, measures taken to prevent dissemination of published data by private actors, measures taken to prevent the stigmatization of the persons whose data have been published and the threats that those persons may receive, measures taken to consider the opinions of persons suffering from coronavirus on the disclosure of contentious personal data, as well as the measures taken to provide effective remedies to persons whose privacy was violated," HRA stated.

According to HRA, in their letter to the Government, the UN Special Rapporteurs expressed concern that the Government's action violated the right to privacy and the right to health, contrary to Montenegro's international obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and the European Convention on Human Rights.

Concern was also expressed over the violation of the concept of "informed consent", meaning that the patient must be informed and involved in the decision-making process about their health care.

"The UN special rapporteurs pointed out that they believe that the Law on Personal Data Protection does not provide an adequate justification to deviate from the requirements of the same law, which stipulates that personal data processing may be performed with the prior consent of the persons whose personal data are processed. They also expressed concern that the Government did not provide adequate justification that the disputed measure was suitable for achieving the stated purpose of protecting life and health and that less restrictive measures to protect the lives and health of citizens were not available. Finally, concern was expressed about the stigmatization faced by both adults and children whose identity and address had been published, and the potential threat to their safety this may have caused," HRA added.

Human Rights Action, they emphasize, sent additional information to the special rapporteurs today and asked them if they would publish their additional comment without a statement from the Government.

"Previously, on 24th March, the HRA informed the Special Rapporteurs about the public disclosure of personal data of persons subject to self-isolation measures, and invited them to contact the Government of Montenegro with a recommendation to immediately put a stop to this violation of human rights," the organization notes.

08 Jul 2020, 18:56 PM
July 8, 2020 - Air connections are becoming all the more frequent between airports in Tivat and Podgorica and European cities. Ryanair is flying to London from today, flights to Barcelona and Brussels have been announced for tomorrow. Also, the national airline of Luxembourg - Luxair starts flying to Montenegrin airports this month.
 
The budget airline Ryanair began flying again on the Podgorica-London route today. From Podgorica, Ryanair flights will also be available to Barcelona and Brussels as of tomorrow.
 
Luxair establishes connection with Montenegro for the first time
Luxair - the national airline of Luxembourg, will establish a regular route between Luxembourg and Montenegro on Sunday, July 19, for the first time in the history of Montenegro Airports. Luxair will be introducing a seasonal line Luxembourg-Tivat-Luxembourg on which it will fly once a week with its regional aircraft type "Bombardier Q400".
 
The plane with a capacity of 76 passengers from Luxembourg will leave every Sunday at 8.20 am and arrive in Tivat at 10.50 am. The return from Tivat to Luxembourg will be at 11.35 am, arriving at its destination at 2.10 pm.
 
The Luxembourg-Tivat line, as announced, will function until September 20. Moreover, Luxair is the first foreign airline to arrive this year at Tivat Airport. From mid-March until today, the volume of scheduled and charter air traffic has been decimated due to the coronavirus pandemic.
 
Since the start of the COVID-19 crisis in Montenegro in mid-March until today, only a minority of the previously most popular regular seasonal routes to Tivat from the German and Ukrainian markets have been renewed by Montenegro Airlines, Eurowings and a Ukrainian charter company hired by the local tour operator ALF.
 
Source: Boka News
08 Jul 2020, 18:36 PM
July 8, 2020 - The laboratories of the Institute of Public Health of Montenegro (IPH) have completed 392 samples for the new coronavirus in the last 24 hours, among which 53 results were COVID-19 positive, the IJZCG announced.
 
These are patients from Podgorica 35, Cetinje 6, Bijelo Polje 5, Berane 3, Budva 2, Nikšić 1, and Pljevlja 1.
 
"There are 623 active COVID-19 cases; five patients have recovered. Since the beginning of June, the total number of registered COVID-19 cases is 636, eight with a fatal outcome," the IPH announced.

The number of active COVID-19 cases by municipality:

Podgorica 229
Rozaje 131
Bijelo Polje 60
Berane 31
Budva 28
Cetinje 21
Pljevlja 20
Bar 19
Gusinje 17
Tivat 15
Petnjica11
Niksic 9
Danilovgrad 8
Ulcinj 8
Kotor 7
Herceg Novi 6
Tuzi 2
Andrijevica 1
 
Municipalities in which there are no infections are: Kolašin, Mojkovac, Plav, Plužine, Šavnik and Žabljak.

Minors with COVID-19 in good condition, MNE has 168 respirators

The Director of the Children's Hospital of the Clinical Center of Montenegro, Sasa Radovic, announced that 79 people are currently being treated for COVID-19 in hospitals in Montenegro.
 
"As far as children are concerned, we have 98 COVID-19 patients under the age of 19. All these patients are in good general condition," said Radović.
 
He said that there are 486-bed units and 168 respirators in the health system, 92 in the Clinical Center of Montenegro.
 
He also stated that 15 health workers were infected with the coronavirus, including three doctors. There are 121 health workers in self-isolation, among them 32 doctors.

Four COVID-19 patients in Berane in serious condition

The General Hospital in Berane is currently treating 28 patients with a confirmed Covid-19 infection - four of them are in the intensive care unit on oxygen support, and their health condition is serious, the health institution announced.
 
"There are 11 more patients under observation for whom we are awaiting results of Covid tests. Three patients have a very severe clinical outlook, and two are in a life-threatening condition," the Berane hospital said.

NKT has not yet considered closing Podgorica

At the press conference of the National Coordination Body for Infectious Diseases (NKT), when asked whether the information that Podgorica will be closed tonight is correct, the Head of the Department of Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases at the IPH Dr. Sanja Medenica said that they had not discussed it today.
 
"The epidemiological situation is becoming more serious, the number of registered cases is increasing," Medenica said, asking the public to wear masks, maintain hygiene and physical distance.

State of emergency possible, elections in doubt

Medenica announced that the introduction of a state of emergency would be discussed at the NKT session, depending on the epidemiological situation.
 
Asked whether they discussed how people in self-isolation would vote in the elections on August 30, Medenica said that a meeting on that issue is scheduled for today, after which the public will have more precise information.
 
According to Medenica, Montenegro can test up to 500 samples a day for the new coronavirus. She also said they hadn't yet recorded a re-infection of COVID-19 in any previously-infected individual. 

The EU continues to support the MNE in the fight against the COVID-19 epidemic

The European Union has donated an additional 10,000 masks to Montenegro through the rescEU component of the EU Civil Protection Mechanism. Within the same contingent of aid, face covers were also given to Serbia, Northern Macedonia, and Croatia, the EU InfoCentre announced.
 
"More needs to be done to prevent the further or recurrent spread of the coronavirus, and protective masks are necessary for that fight. Today, based on previous requests, we send 65,000 additional protective ace covers to Montenegro, Serbia, Northern Macedonia, and Croatia. I thank Romania for enabling the storage and transport of rescEU equipment to those who need it," said Crisis Management Commissioner Janez Lenarcic.
 
The Directorate for Emergency Situations Director in the Ministry of Internal Affairs, Mirsad Mulić, emphasized that this donation represents another confirmation of the continuous support of the European Union in this challenging period of the fight against coronavirus.

Institute supported within the Call for COVID-19 projects

The Central European Initiative has completed the process of evaluating projects submitted within the extraordinary Call for COVID-19 projects, the Ministry of Science announced.
 
"Out of 7,000 applications received from all member countries of the Initiative, 22 project ideas were selected for funding. Among them is a scientific research institution from Montenegro - the Institute of Public Health, with the project 'National Telemedicine Platform,'" the statement said.
 
The project manager is, on behalf of the Institute, Dr. Senad Begić.
 
This CEI Call was to quickly address the specific needs of communities within the CEI member states in medicine, education, and support for micro, small, and medium enterprises.
08 Jul 2020, 15:51 PM
July 8, 2020 - The National Tourist Organization of Montenegro and the national airline Montenegro Airlines, in cooperation with the Chamber of Commerce of Montenegro, have launched a campaign to form attractive tourist package arrangements in order to improve tourist traffic. The idea is to carry out joint activities to face the extraordinary circumstances surrounding this tourist season.
 
To increase competitiveness, Montenegro Airlines has offered promotional ticket prices for package deals on all available routes, which are valid only with an accommodation voucher. This offer will be available for passengers coming by MA flights from Slovenia (Ljubljana), Austria (Vienna), Germany - Frankfurt, Dusseldorf, Hanover, and from August 3 Munich and Leipzig, France (Paris, also Lyon from July 25), Denmark (Copenhagen) and Switzerland (Zurich), they explained in the announcement.
 
"Bearing in mind that these are low prices for return air tickets, ranging from 99 euros on the route to Ljubljana, to a maximum of 164 euros on the Paris route, including all taxes, all interested hoteliers in Montenegro are invited to create an equally attractive special offer of accommodation and accommodation services. The National Tourist Organization is forming and promoting package deals, which will be available for sale to all travel agencies in Montenegro and partners in target markets," the statement said.
 
"Interested parties should provide a single price for a stay on a half board or full board basis valid for the period until November 1 and send to NTOCG at the e-mail address This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. no later than July 10, 2020," the statement concludes.
07 Jul 2020, 22:51 PM

July 7, 2020 - The laboratories of the Institute of Public Health have completed PCR analysis of 445 samples for the new coronavirus in the last 24 hours, among which 66 results were COVID-19 positive, the Institute of Public Health announced. Since the beginning of June, the total number of registered cases is 583. There have been eight deaths. Five patients have recovered and therefore the number of active COVID-19 cases is 570.

These are patients from Podgorica 39, Rožaje 8, Berane 4, Tivat 3, Budva 3, Cetinje 3, Gusinje 3, Bijelo Polje 1, Kotor 1, Pljevlja 1. Twenty new patients are contacts of previously confirmed COVID-19 cases.

Two more deaths have been registered in patients treated at the General Hospital in Berane, and results have come back positive for one suspected coronavirus-related death from Rožaje. The total number of deaths from COVID-19 since the beginning of June is eight.

During the day, five patients recovered, one from Cetinje and four from the Berane General Hospital.

The number of active COVID-19 cases by municipalities:

Podgorica 194
Rozaje 137
Bijelo Polje 56
Berane 34
Budva 26
Pljevlja 19
Bar 17
Tivat 15
Cetinje 16
Gusinje 17
Petnjica 12
Danilovgrad 8
Ulcinj 8
Niksic 8
Kotor 7
Herceg Novi 6
Tuzi 2
Andrijevica 1

Two deaths in the last 24 hours

Two patients with Covid-19 have died at the General Hospital in Berane, the institution announced. They also stated that two of the 26 COVID-19 patients being treated there were in a critical condition.

The head of the Berane General Hospital's infectious diseases department, Dr. Milovan Živković, highlighted that this hospital had been previously declared a COVID-19 hospital for the north and that as such, seven more municipalities gravitate to it.

"These are the municipalities of Rozaje, Plav, Gusinje, Andrijevica, Bijelo Polje, Mojkovac and Petnjica. In this area today, we have over 220 positive cases of COVID-19. It means that half of the total number of patients in Montenegro rely on this hospital, and the other half on the Clinical Center and other hospitals," said Živković.

The Clinical Center of Montenegro is currently treating 34 confirmed coronavirus patients, one of whom is in the Intensive Care Unit in a critical condition, the health institution announced.

New counter- COVID-19 measures

The National Coordination Body for Infectious Diseases (NCB) has decided to tighten temporary epidemic measures throughout Montenegro and especially in several municipalities in the Northern region.

  • An epidemic of infectious diseases has been proclaimed in Bijelo Polje, Berane, Petnjica, Rozaje, and Gusinje.
  • Throughout Montenegro, entertainment and music programs are prohibited in catering facilities: concerts, live performances by musicians, groups, DJs, etc.
  • Catering facilities are open until 10 p.m. in Podgorica, Cetinje, Plužine, Šavnik, Žabljak, Nikšić, Danilovgrad, Tuzi, Kolašin and Mojkovac.
  • In the Southern region, that is, in all coastal municipalities, the restriction on the operation of catering facilities until midnight, introduced yesterday, remains in force.
  • The NCT recommends that in addition to the mandatory wearing of protective masks indoors, every citizen wears a mask in open spaces in places where it is not possible to maintain physical distance.

No additional conditions for UK citizens

The United Kingdom is included in the "green list" of countries whose residents can enter Montenegro without additional conditions.

Residents of Turkey, the UAE, Ukraine, and Belarus are allowed to enter under special arrangements with the MORT and with controls.

Paid leave for one parent

The National Coordination Body for Infectious Diseases, based on the consent of the majority of members, decided that the parents (guardians) or the foster parent/adoptive parent or single parent of a preschool child should be provided with paid leave.

This measure does not apply to employees in public services and organizations whose work is essential for the current epidemiological situation.

NKT once again calls on state bodies, state administration bodies, local self-government and local administrations, companies, public institutions, and other legal entities, as well as entrepreneurs, to provide such work to employees who can work from home.

Serbia has introduced compulsory self-isolation for Montenegrin citizens

Due to the negative epidemiological situation in Montenegro, a measure of compulsory self-isolation of 14 days will be introduced for all Montenegrin citizens who enter Serbia, the Cabinet of the Prime Minister of Serbia, Ana Brnabić confirmed to the TANJUG agency.

Last night, the National Coordination Body for Infectious Diseases passed a measure according to which a two-week quarantine will be made obligatory for Serbia's citizens upon arrival in Montenegro.

Vučić: Montenegro has PCR laboratories, I was wrong

Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic apologized to Montenegro for claiming earlier that it did not have a PCR laboratory.

Vučić said at the press conference that he had made a mistake, stating that he did not have the correct information.

"I only made one mistake by saying that there are no PCR laboratories in Montenegro. They have them. That's why I apologize, "said Vučić.

He announced that new measures would be introduced in Serbia due to the spread of the virus.

"From tomorrow, any public gathering for more than five people will be banned, either in an open or closed space, and the curfew starts on Friday, until Monday. After that, we will see, "said Vucic.

He pointed out that Serbia does not hide the number of patients and deaths from coronavirus and has carried out the largest number of tests in the region.

Jonica: NKT and Djukanovic are pursuing a policy of double standards

The President of the Socialists of Montenegro Snezana Jonica pointed out that the National Coordination Body and the President of Montenegro, Milo Djukanovic, should put citizens' health before the political interest of the government when it comes to holding elections. Otherwise, they will be proving that they are pursuing a policy of double yardstick.

"It is time for NKT and Djukanovic to answer the question - do they care more about the health of Montenegrin citizens or the election result of the DPS?"

Montenegro football championship suspended

The Montenegrin football championship has been suspended, the Football Association of Montenegro (FSCG) Executive Board has decided.

The members of the Executive Board adopted the proposal to cancel competitions organized by the Football Association - Telecom 1. CFL, Second League, Youth League, Cadet League, Cup of Montenegro and Women's Football League - and all competitions of the Association of FSCG Clubs (South, Center, and North).
The results of matches up until the end of the competition will be considered final. Based on these, announcements will be made regarding the winners, participants in the qualifications for European competitions, participants in the playoffs, and delegated clubs.

07 Jul 2020, 21:59 PM

July 7, 2020 - The start of the International Festival KotorArt Don Branko's Music Days is planned this year for Wednesday, 15th July, when the audience at Boka Cinema will have the opportunity to view a film production by the German media house Deutsche Welle. The documentary "Symphony for the World" is a unique production that speaks of the power and universality of the language of music and its strong messages that are understood the world over, regardless of cultural, religious, national, ideological, geographical and any other differences. Specifically, the documentary is about Beethoven's famous Ninth Symphony and its multiple meanings. The partner of this project is the Kotor Cultural Centre "Nikola Đurković".

“We have moved our traditional opening concert of the Festival to August, as for this event we are already accustomed to a large audience - we are acting responsibly given the current situation and we are respecting all NKT measures, as well as responding to all challenges swiftly and competently. We plan to be able to completely control all aspects of the organisation process of the concerts, and implement all the precautionary measures prescribed by the NCT. At a time when the whole world, including our society, is going through a period of uncertainty and insecurity in many aspects of life, we want to provide a piece of what many call “food for the soul,” and at least a little of the everyday joy that until recently was a part of our daily lives. We understand through experience that mental and spiritual health is as important as physical health, and art has always, as evidenced by many examples from the past, helped to overcome many difficult periods in the history of mankind. We hope that our events will provide local people with a slightly brighter, more humane and beautiful everyday life. We hope that we will be able to provide some comfort, some affirmation of the special threads that bind us together, threads that remain even when we are not allowed to hug because of distance measures, when we cannot recognize each other because of protective masks, or when we are in quarantine, keeping ourselves away from others. The art of music is one of those threads.” says a statement by the Festival’s PR service.

“The audience of KotorArt Don Branko's Music Days has become accustomed to receiving information about the programme for the forthcoming summer in March. This year, due to extraordinary circumstances, we ask our audience to follow the official website of the Festival, www.kotorart.me as well as social networks - Facebook and Instagram pages, where we will publish possible, or more likely probable, programme changes. There are several Festival teams that closely follow the recommendations of the NKT and adjust every aspect of the Festival to these.”

“The ceremonial opening programme of the Festival, planned for 14th July, has been moved to close this year's event. Considering that the evening is completely dedicated to Beethoven, we believe that it will be a beautiful and fitting way for the Festival to ensure a dignified celebration of his 250th birthday. On the occasion of this anniversary, as well as facing the challenges of life, and given the position and message of art in this unusual moment for the entire world, the festival is preparing additional activities and programme events that will soon be announced to the general public.” the Festival PR service added.

KotorArt Kotor Children's Theatre Festival has already begun in Kotor. All large-scale performances have been postponed until August, but the accompanying programmes and workshops with children from Kotor have been launched, to the great joy of the children, who are reacting superbly in new circumstances and are quickly adapting to their "new reality".

07 Jul 2020, 11:39 AM
July 7, 2020 - The number of active COVID-19 cases in Montenegro has risen to 512 after the Institute of Public Health announced yesterday that the results of the analysis of 511 samples had revealed another 60 new COVID-19 cases. The National Coordination Body for Infectious Diseases has adopted a set of new measures for the entire country, but also specific rules for the inhabitants of the municipalities of the Northern region.
 
Of the total number infected since mid-June - 517, five patients have died. The total number of registered cases of COVID-19 since March 17, when the first patients infected with coronavirus were confirmed in Montenegro, is 941.
 
Among the new cases of COVID-19 confirmed yesterday, the number of patients by municipality is Podgorica 37, Petnjica 5, Tivat 4, Ulcinj 4, Rozaje 3, Bijelo Polje 2, Budva 2, Berane 2, and Cetinje 1.
 
Thirty of these are contacts of previously confirmed cases, while in the same number of patients the source of infection is still being investigated.

Number of active COVID-19 cases by municipality:

Podgorica 155
Rozaje 129
Bijelo Polje 55
Berane 30
Budva 23
Pljevlja 18
Bar 17
Gusinje 14
Cetinje 13
Petnjica 12
Tivat 1
Danilovgrad 8
Ulcinj 8
Niksic 8
Kotor 6
Herceg Novi 6
Tuzi 2
Andrijevica 1

New counter- COVID-19 measures from the National Coordinating Body for Infectious Diseases

At yesterday's session, the National Coordination Body for Infectious Diseases (NCB) decided on several epidemiological measures, both for the whole of Montenegro and for the Northern region in particular.
 
It was decided that due to the high epidemiological risk, educational work in public and private preschool institutions would cease.
 
The working hours of all catering facilities - restaurants, cafes, cafeterias, hotel restaurants, and similar catering facilities, as well as catering facilities on beaches across the entire territory of Montenegro are limited until midnight.
 
The measures will be applied in the next week. Based on the analysis of the effect of those rules and the epidemiological situation, it will be decided whether their application will be extended, the Government of Montenegro announced.
 
"The National Coordinating Body reminds caterers of the applicable measures and the recommendations of the Institute of Public Health for catering facilities. They must pay special attention to measures pertaining to the maximum number of four people at the table, except members of the same family household, and the obligation to have a distance between tables of at least two meters," the announcement states.

Stricter counter- COVID-19 measures in the Northern region

Due to the complicated epidemiological situation in the Northern region, it was decided that in the municipalities of Pljevlja, Bijelo Polje, Berane, Petnjica, Andrijevica, Rožaje, Plav and Gusinje, all catering facilities will be closed for a week," the Government highlights. 
 

Specific measures for North:

  • Gatherings in indoor and outdoor public places are prohibited (public meetings, public events, sports, political, cultural, artistic and private gatherings, weddings, and other events);
  • Religious communities are obliged to adapt their activities to the current epidemiological situation and to perform religious rites in religious buildings exclusively without the public present;
  • It is forbidden to transport more than two adults in a passenger motor vehicle at the same time, except for members of the joint family household and persons who perform regular work tasks;
  • Gatherings and movement of more than two persons in an open public place is prohibited, except for members of the joint family household and persons who perform regular work tasks; 
  • It is mandatory to use protective masks in closed and open public places. This obligation does not apply to residential buildings;
  • Gatherings in residential buildings of persons who are not members of a joint family household are prohibited.
 
Special teams have been formed, which are already in place in the Northern region's municipalities, to help coordinate and consult with local authorities and medical experts to overcome the consequences of the spread of coronavirus in the region as quickly and efficiently as possible.
 
"The National Coordination Body is saying to the people and the economy of the Northern region that the medical system and indeed the entire country are with them, but that success in curbing the spread of the infection depends primarily on the extent to which each individual obeys orders," the Government said in a statement.

Repeated recommendation to work from home

The state administration and local self-government, companies, and entrepreneurs were invited to organize work from home for as long as possible. 
 
"Both state bodies, and the economy and the public have the same goal: preserving the continuity of activities while taking care of people's health and lives," the Government points out.

The strictest epidemiological surveillance upon entry from Serbia

"Considering epidemiological developments in the Republic of Serbia, it was decided that all persons coming to Montenegro from that country would be sent into quarantine. 
 
Montenegro remains determined not to close for its people, but the rate of active COVID-19 cases in the Republic of Serbia demands a responsible approach. "The area along the border with Montenegro requires the strictest epidemiological surveillance. Therefore, persons entering Montenegro from the Republic of Serbia will not be sent to home self-isolation until further notice, but to quarantine in facilities designated by the state for that purpose," the Government said.

Foreigners' residence permits are valid until September 30

The National Coordination Body has decided, at the proposal of the Police Administration, that residence permits that have already expired for foreigners in Montenegro are considered valid until September 30, 2020, if the person to whom the permission applies meets all other legally prescribed conditions.
 
It was decided that after the previous similar measures adopted during the epidemic, and after today's proposal, the validity of residence permits for foreigners after September 30 will not be extended in this way.

The Directorate for Inspection Affairs imposed fines of 8,500 euros within two days of the new Law coming into force

The National Coordination Body for Infectious Diseases reviewed the Report of the Directorate for Inspection Affairs on activities undertaken from 3 to July 5, i.e., after the entry into force of the legislation on Amendments to the Law on Protection of the Population from Infectious Diseases.
 
In two days, inspectors imposed fines relating to misdemeanor orders of EUR 8,500. The Markets Inspectorate imposed EUR 4,250 for non-compliance with measures for personal protective masks and other protective equipment. The Tourist Inspectorate EUR 3,550 for non-compliance with a mandatory distance between tables in restaurants or the number of persons sitting at a table, while the Labor Inspectorate imposed €700 in misdemeanor fines for employees not using protective equipment.

Election meeting on Wednesday

Representatives of the National Coordination Body for Infectious Diseases, the State Election Commission, competent state institutions, and non-governmental organizations dealing with election conditions will meet on Wednesday. They will discuss the measures that need to be adopted to enable an unhindered selection process in the upcoming elections, given the circumstances of extended coronavirus infection.

Kusovac case proof that Law applies equally to everyone

The Director of the Emergency Center of the Clinical Center of Montenegro, Nermin Abdić, said at yesterday's press conference that filing criminal charges against the Mayor of the Municipality of Tivat, Siniša Kusovac, for violating self-isolation, shows clearly that the Law is the same for everyone.
 
"The state is capable of responding to poor behavior of individuals who, due to personal irresponsibility, endangered potential contacts and violated self-isolation measures. Self-isolation is the same for everyone, be it the Mayor of the municipality, a worker, a baker, a cook, or anyone else, and you have to respect the punishment meted out, in order to show both personal and collective responsibility," said Abdić.
 
Sources: Insitute of Public Health, Government of Montenegro, Vijesti
 
06 Jul 2020, 17:05 PM

July 6, 2020 - Mackerel is swimming 20 meters from the shore in Muo. Shoals of sardines surround the octopus relaxing in the shallows. Hundreds of kilos of mullet just waiting to be caught, while a beautiful sea turtle roams in Stoliv. Are these direct results of the coronavirus impact on the sea ecosystem, or is it a natural cycle conditioned by factors outside the influence of man?

It is still too early for scientists to give reliable answers, but commercial and leisure fishers alike agree - marine life has returned to the Bay of Kotor because there is space to return to. There have been no cruise ships for almost five months, yacht traffic is negligible, and our shores are not primarily parking lots for boats and yachts.
 
"Something is happening with the ecosystem. Reduced human activity has influenced the living world, not only of the Bay of Kotor but of the entire Adriatic, and it is now returning to activities unhindered by anthropogenic factors. So, wherever man is present, wherever human activity is current, there we have a shelter of the living world and an escape from our actions. This situation, and the peace that has lasted for months - no cruise ships, reduced activities of all vessels at sea, definitely benefit the fish populations and other living organisms in the bay. There is no noise, no artificial movements of water, no lifting of sludge from the bottom. So fish and other marine organisms can live peacefully and expand their habitat where, precisely because of these human activities, they could not exist before, "explains the Director of the Institute of Marine Biology in Kotor, ichthyologist Dr. Aleksandar Joksimović.
 
sea zdenka 2
Photo by Zdenka Janković
 
"The conversations I had with the fishermen were sporadic. Coastal fishermen who fish with a rod or from a single line onshore, say that for a long time they had not noticed even those species of fish that are characteristic of the shoal - catfish and other species that live by our shores, and in Mandraći in stone cavities. Now they are slowly returning. At the same time, there is information from commercial fishers that shoals of blue anchovies and sardines have appeared in the bay. We have now entered the spawning period of many species of fish, so it is evident that the young fish are coming to shallow waters. They are now using the littoral part of the Bay of Kotor as their habitat. Therefore, definitely - and based on our preliminary analysis and conversations with fishers - we can conclude that something has happened in the marine ecosystem. We do not know how long it will last, how long this situation will continue. But, based on this research, when we write a report we will be able to say something concrete about the situation. Of course we will need to process the data collected, and compare them with previous data and reports, and for this we will need a long series of data to be able to adequately and scientifically explain some changes and new situations. We will need to use data series from far back into the past, based on the cyclical changes and natural fluctuations in the ecosystem, and the so-called Adriatic ingressions that penetrate the Adriatic Sea every nine to 11 years. The East-Mediterranean saltier and warmer water penetrates our sea, bringing phytoplankton and other nutrients - which makes up a large proportion of the food for both small and large fish. Only based on the analysis of all these circumstances, will we be able to put together a complete picture and finally say whether something has happened and why," explains Joksimović.
 
sea zdenka 3
Photo by Zdenka Janković
 
However, we can already conclude from conversations with fishers and local people - the sea is clearer; there are more marine organisms along the coast. Does it mean that a short hiatus is enough for ecologically endangered areas to begin to recover from the effects of anthropogenic activities? The question is whether these observations, especially the detailed scientific analyses and the resulting recommendations of experts from the Institute of Marine Biology, can have a direct impact on decision-making when it comes to sustainable marine and coastal management. The Director of the Institute of Marine Biology, Aleksandar Joksimović, explains:
 
"Our scientific-research activity should lead to that goal - to give scientific recommendations, i.e., scientific opinions. Unfortunately, their further implementation does not depend on us. We are not an institution that can mandate follow-up on our own advice. Based on scientific data we provide, and our participation in working groups for Mediterranean fisheries, biodiversity protection and Adriatic protection, alongsite those for negotiations with the European Union - all bodies dealing with marine issues within the system should heed our recommendations as a postulate and incorporate them into plans and strategic documents emanating from Montenegro. Our opinions are not based on emotion or supposition; they are the result of many years of experience and scientific work and data exchanges that we have almost every day with similar institutions in the region. It is also the fruit of our participation in numerous international projects aimed at creating common platforms and recommendations for responsible relations and use of the Adriatic and the whole Mediterranean. All this is proof that our data is valid. Our reports have scientific weight and should be incorporated into documents to become a template for our future actions, in order to change our awareness of and attitude towards nature, here specifically towards the bay and our sea."
 
sea zdenka 1
Photo by Zdenka Janković
 
Unfortunately, we are witnessing a disregard of many scientific recommendations in the race for short-term economic interests, without realizing that the current treatment of marine and coastal ecosystems is unsustainable and leads to the destruction of these resources both ecologically and economically.
 
What we can do at the moment is enjoy the sea, which is much less polluted and muddy than in previous years. We can sample more delicious fish because it seems that there is indeed more there than in recent years, and even complete novices will be lucky if they try their hand at fishing.
 
"The fact is that some species of fish have returned to the bay and no one bothers them. No one prevents them from being closer to the shore in their life cycle. No noise, no sea turbulence, no excessive activity around them. I guess that makes for happy fishermen and good catches," concluded the Director of the Institute of Marine Biology of the University of Montenegro in Kotor, Dr. Aleksandar Joksimović.
05 Jul 2020, 20:24 PM

On July 5, 2020 - The Tivat Police Force have filed a criminal complaint against the President of the Municipality of Tivat, Siniša Kusovac, for violating the measure of self-isolation.

"Officials of the Security Department of Tivat, on the order of the competent state prosecutor, have filed a criminal complaint against the President of the Municipality of Tivat, Siniša Kusovac. The reason is a well-founded suspicion that he committed the criminal offense of failing to comply with health regulations to combat dangerous infectious diseases by violating the measure of compulsory self-isolation at home, " the Police Administration announced.

"The Tivat police carried out official checks, about which they informed the competent health and sanitary inspector and the responsible state prosecutor. After the information was collected, the state prosecutor concluded that elements of a criminal offense had been confirmed in Siniša Kusovac's actions. According to the sanitary inspector's decision, Siniša Kusovac is being quarantined," it is stated in the announcement.
 

Numerous individuals claim that they saw him yesterday afternoon on the Žukovica beach in Donji Grbalj - Vijesti writes. 

Tivat resident and Vijesti correspondent from the area Siniša Luković reported to the police yesterday that the President of the Municipality of Tivat Siniša Kusovac had been spotted during the day in Žukovica - Municipality of Kotor - thus violating the self-isolation measure established by the health and sanitary inspection, Tivat police announced to Radio Tivat. 

Kusovac confirmed that he was there, but claims that he did not get out of the car and that he did not violate his self-isolation.

According to individuals in the locality, Kusovac was in Žukovica yesterday between 5 and 6 pm - one of the most beautiful, but somewhat isolated beaches in Boka.

He arrived in the official car of Tivat Municipality, a black "Nissan Quashqai" (TV MN 001), which he had previously put at his own disposal for 24 hours.

When one of member of the public went to take a photograph, Kusovac allegedly noticed and quickly got into the car, and drove away. However, witnesses spotted a black Nissan travelling along the road from Žukovica to Glavatičići. Although he did not initially answer the phone or reply to an SMS from "Vijesti," Kusovac later told the journalist in a telephone conversation that he had not left his house, and he was certainly not in Žukovica.

However, when asked who had been on a non-working day in Žukovica, if not the person provided with the official vehicle, Kusovac responded confusedly and then said that another person from the Municipality might have used the vehicle. He later changed the story after "Vijesti" sent him a photo of the municiple vehicle on a country road and asked for an official statement:

"I went down (to Žukovica) and was there for literally two minutes. I did not bathe in Žukovica, but I left the place of self-isolation for a short time due to a private problem, with the competent sanitary inspector's consent. By the way, the village of Glavatičići in Grblja was assigned to me as my place of self-isolation, not Tivat. I did not violate my self-isolation because I did not get out of the car, and I was not in contact with anyone. Feel free to let those who saw me there report if I talked to anyone there, let them say how long it took and what it was. I reported everything to the police and the sanitary inspectorate. It is my view that I did not violate self-isolation, "Kusovac told Vijesti, not wanting to answer the question of what he was looking for on Saturday afternoon in Donji Grbalj and why he was leaving the house.

Due to the fact that he had been in contact with a teacher from the Tivat kindergarten "Bambi" at a meeting in the Municipality last week, who was confirmed to have a coronavirus infection late Sunday evening, June 29, Kusovac has been officially in self-isolation since Thursday, July 2.

He was tested for coronavirus, but has not yet made any announcement as to the result.

Before announcing that he had been placed in self-isolation on Thursday, Kusovac went to work for three days and contacted numerous members of the public. On Tuesday, June 30, he attended and spoke at a session of the local parliament.

Those who violate self-isolation measures, according to the valid regulations in Montenegro, can be fined or imprisoned for up to a year.

Another criminal offense that can be brought against persons who violate self-isolation and are confirmed to be infected is the transmission of dangerous infectious diseases. Anyone who does not act according to orders to stop the spread of the infectious disease can be sentenced to between one and three years in prison.

Sources: Vijesti, Radio Tivat

05 Jul 2020, 19:43 PM

July 5, 2020 - In the last 24 hours, the laboratories of the Institute of Public Health have carried out  PCR analysis of 450 samples for the new coronavirus, among which COVID-19 infection was recorded in 61 cases. These are patients from Rožaje 28, Bijelo Polje 9, Podgorica 7, Budva 5, Bar 3, Cetinje 3, Kotor 3, Pljevlja 2, Nikšić 1.

"Out of 61 newly discovered COVID-19 cases, 46 are contacts of previously confirmed cases, in 14 patients the source of infection is as yet unknown, and one case is imported. Since the beginning of June, the number of registered cases is 457, with five deaths, and the number of active cases is 452," it was announced from the Institute of Public Health.

Active COVID-19 cases by municipality:

Rozaje 126
Podgorica 118
Bijelo Polje 53
Berane 28
Budva 2
Pljevlja 18
Bar 17
Gusinje 14
Cetinje 12
Tivat 8
Danilovgrad 8
Niksic 8
Petnjica 7
Kotor 6
Herceg Novi 6
Ulcinj 4
Tuzi 2
Andrijevica 1

Fifth death from COVID-19 since mid-June

A seventy-four-year-old patient from Rožaje passed away last night in the Intensive Care Unit of the Internal Clinic as a result of COVID-19 infection, the Clinical Center of Montenegro (KCCG) announced.
 

"At the Clinical Center of Montenegro, 31 patients are currently being treated in whom the presence of the COVID-19 virus has been confirmed, of which nine are in the Semi-Intensive Unit, and one in a life-threatening condition it the Intensive Care Unit," the KCCG said.

Kavarić: The increase in the number of COVID-19 cases in Podgorica is worrying

The epidemiological situation and the increase in the number of patients in Podgorica are worrying, says the Director of the Podgorica Health Center, Dr. Nebojsa Kavaric.

If the public does not behave responsibly and reduce their daily commitments, Kavarić says that he will propose to the NCT the introduction of additional measures for the area of ​​Podgorica.

"We will propose this to prevent further escalation of the number of patients, which could jeopardize the functionality of the health system," said Kavarić. The option of closing the capital is still on the table if the need arises.

"It is within the domain of the epidemiological service. It remains for us to appeal to the citizens to behave in a disciplined manner. Visiting cafes and restaurants is recommended only when necessary, with recommendations that apply to all other closed facilities, such as wearing a mask, distancing and washing your hands. These are three simple instructions that mean a lot and reduce the chain of transmission to practically zero. We all know that that the public does not necessarily adhere to these rules, "claims Kavarić.

Considering the current daily shift in the epidemiological situation and the increased number of patients, the Health Center Podgorica will intensify the work of the COVID-19 center in Tološi.

"We ask people to be responsible and patient in keeping their distance while waiting for the COVID-19 center examination. And it is worth mentioning once again to wear a mask in the facilities of the Health Center. I would appeal to the public to reduce regular health needs in other parts of the Health Center to what is really necessary, and to utilize online systems whre available. All the facilities of the Health Center are still functioning. In accordance with the unfolding situation in the area of ​​the Capital, the public will be informed in a timely manner if facilities are relocated, "concluded the Director of the Podgorica Health Center, Dr. Nebojsa Kavaric.

As a member of the Crisis Medical Team, Dr. Kavarić will stay in Rožaje for the next seven days, thus helping the Health Center implement the recommendations of the National Coordination Body for Infectious Diseases.

From tomorrow, arrival from Great Britain, the United Arab Emirates and Canada is possible without quarantine

The Institute of Public Health has updated the list of countries from which it is possible to enter Montenegro. The news is that from tomorrow, passengers from the United Kingdom, the United Arab Emirates, and Canada will be able to enter the country with a PCR, ELISA, or ECLIA test. Arrival from Serbia is still not possible without quarantine.

04 Jul 2020, 21:40 PM

July 4, 2020 - The laboratories of the Institute of Public Health (IJZCG) have analysed 548 samples for the new coronavirus in the last 24 hours, among which 57 results were positive.

The new cases are from Bijelo Polje (25), Podgorica (19), Pljevalja (6), Rožaje (2), Herceg Novi (2), Bar (1), Cetinje (1) and Nikšić (1).

Of the 57 new cases, 35 are contacts of previously-confirmed cases, whereas the source of the infection is still being traced in 21 of the patients. One case is imported.

From 1st June a total of 396 cases have been registered, with four deaths and 392 active cases.

Active COVID-19 cases by municipality:

Podgorica 111

Rožaje 96

Bijelo Polje 44

Berane 28

Budva 16

Pljevlja 16

Gusinje 14

Bar 13

Cetinje 9

Tivat 8

Danilovgrad 8

Nikšić 7

Petnjica 6

Herceg Novi 6

Ulcinj 4

Kotor 3

Tuzi 2

Andrijevica 1

Beaches applying counter-COVID-19 measures

Chief tourist inspector Svetlana Šljivančanin said that the beaches on the Montenegrin coast are safe for tourists, because, as she pointed out, they are being monitored and maintained by Morsko Dobro, the tenant-operators, and also the Tourist Inspectorate.

Šljivančanin spoke to the morning programme of Television Montenegro (TVCG), stating that the agreements concluded between the tenants of the beaches and Morsko Dobro, alongside the operational approval given by the Secretariat for the Economy, are proof that the beaches are safe.

"The beaches are safe because they are being taken care of by the representatives of Morsko Dobro and the tenants, as well as the Tourist Inspectorate, as a control body. "All tenants must have a contract with Morsko Dobro, as well as a work permit from the Secretariat for the Economy, and that is proof that the beaches are safe and that equipment provided fully meets regulatory standards," said Šljivančanin.

Tenants, she said, are obliged to respect the relevant regulations, and as of this year, they are also obliged to respect the recommendations of the National Coordination Body (NCT) and the Institute of Public Health (IPH).

"We also visit the beaches on a daily basis and monitor whether the tenants are working within the legal provisions," said Šljivančanin.

As she states, there are both binding measures, and those recommended by the IPH when it comes to bathing areas.

"Tenants are obliged to provide clear notices on temporary measures to prevent and protect against the virus at the entrance to the bathing area; they are also obliged to have their staff wear protective equipment, as well as to keep beach chairs and loungers at least two metres apart, to ensure that these are disinfected, alongside cabins, showers, toilets, equipment for children; they are also obliged to keep disinfectant at the entrance and exit from the bathing area,” said Sljivancanin.

Hygiene at bathing areas not run by tenant-operators, said the chief tourism inspector, is maintained by the utility company in each municipality.

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