19 Jul 2019, 01:25 AM

17 July 2019 - During the first half of the year, out of 134 commitments planned by the EU Accession Programme, Montenegro fulfiled 95 commitments, that is, more than 70%, while the expected realisation of final regulations in the next few weeks will significantly increase the overall level of commitments, Deputy Chief Negotiator Marko Mrdak told the press following Cabinet session, reported the Office for European Integrations.

At this session, the Government passed the Report on the implementation of the Programme on Accession of Montenegro to the European Union 2019-2020, for the first half of 2019.

"Out of 134 planned commitments, 95 (71%) were fulfilled, out of 84 planned laws and by-laws 52 (62%) were implemented, while out of 50 planned strategic documents, 43 (86%)  were fulfilled," Mr Mrdak said.

The cabinet meeting also adopted the Information on the Collegium for Negotiations' guidelines for the further functioning of the negotiating structure, defined at the 22nd session of the Collegium, with a view to intensifying the dynamics of the negotiating process and achieving better results in the continuation of the EU accession process.

In addition to agreeing that meetings of the Negotiating Group, Rule of Law Council and the Collegium for Negotiations with the EU will take place once a month, and that meetings of all working groups will take place by 15 July, it was agreed that periodic meetings of line ministers with non-governmental organisations that are members of working groups should be organised.

"In this way, not only do we want to formally boost the system of cooperation with civil society organisations, but essentially find a mechanism for improving all public policies and the use of all knowledge in our society. We can say that the Government has defined the most intensive and most dynamic a plan of work in the coming period, focusing on all of its expert capacities and consulting the political level," Deputy Chief Negotiator Mrdak concluded.

Read more news about politics in Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.

14 Jul 2019, 21:00 PM

13 July 2019 - The Communication Team of the Interdepartmental Commission of the Council for NATO launched a media campaign aimed at improving providing information to the public about all the aspects of Montenegro's membership in the North Atlantic Alliance, as Government of Montenegro reported.

A multi-month campaign has been created in line with the Communication Strategy - Montenegro NATO member for the period until 2020, adopted by the Government of Montenegro on 28 June last year and in partnership with NATO and the experts of the Government of the United Kingdom, with whom the Government Montenegro developed its first Communication Strategy.

During the campaign, the Communication Team will, in partnership with the interested media and NGOs, open up topics related to NATO membership that are of interest to the public.

A public opinion poll conducted prior to the development of the Communication Strategy Montenegro NATO member for the period until 2020, as well as research carried out during the preparation of the campaign, commissioned by two specialised agencies, showed that most citizens of Montenegro feel safe in their environment, and Montenegro in general.

Furthermore, more citizens of Montenegro today feel more secure than they felt before the country became a member of NATO.

Although citizens are divided in their opinion about the sense of security, a slightly higher proportion of the Montenegrin citizens believe that Montenegro is safer today than it was ten years ago.

The Montenegrin citizens who are against NATO say that the country "should be neutral". However, almost half of them (45%) cannot name any neutral state in Europe. They consider some of the countries neutral that are founders of NATO (Norway) or that are members (Slovenia).

Both advocates and opponents of Montenegro's membership in NATO share the view that the key aspect of membership is the security of the country.

According to the research, more citizens believe that Montenegro’s membership in NATO has contributed to regional security. The number of citizens of Montenegro who consider that Montenegro’s membership in NATO does not contribute to regional security has declined.

Read more news about politics in Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.
12 Jul 2019, 22:52 PM

11 July 2019 - President of the Russian Federation Vladimir Putin congratulated the President of Montenegro Milo Đukanović on the occasion of the 13th of July - the Statehood Day of Montenegro.

"Dear Mr. President, please receive congratulations on the occasion of the national holiday of your country - Statehood Day. I wish to the people of Montenegro peace, happiness and prosperity," said Putin in the congratulatory letter sent to Montenegro.

President of the United States of America Donald Tramp also congratulated the Statehood Day of Montenegro to the country's president and its citizens.

"Dear Mr. President, on behalf of the citizens of the United States, I congratulate you and the citizens of Montenegro the state holiday July the 13th. During 13 years of independence, Montenegro has made important progress in its integration into the Euro-Atlantic community. Your historic admission to NATO in 2017 has further strengthened a strong partnership between our two countries and I warmly welcome your continued contribution to regional and global security," pointed out President of the United States of America Donald Trump.

Donald Trump also added that the United States will continue to support Montenegro in its reform efforts and development goals and that the common values of security, peace, and freedom are the basis for an even deeper partnership in the coming period between the two countries.

According to the report of the Office of the President of Montenegro, congratulations on the occasion of the Statehood Day were also sent by King Philippe of Belgium, Austrian President Alexander van der Bellen, King of Saudi Arabia Salman Bin Abdulaziz Al-Saud, President of the Arab Republic of Egypt Abdel Fatah el Sisi, President of the Republic of Croatia Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović, Australian Governor David Hurley, President of South Korea Moon Jae-In, King of Sweden Carl Gustaf, President of the Republic of Slovakia Zuzana Caputova, President of Hungary Ader Janos, President of Switzerland Ueli Maurer, President of Algeria Adbelkader Bensalah, President of Greece Prokopis Pavlopoulos, King of Jordan Abdullah II, President of Ireland Michael D. Higgins, President of the Presidium of the Supreme People's Assembly of North Korea Choe Ryong hae, President of the Czech Republic Miloš Zeman and others.

Read more about politics in Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.

11 Jul 2019, 18:41 PM

July 11, 2019 - Roma integration in the Western Balkan countries was one of the topics of the Summit of the Western Balkan countries, which took place from July 3 to 5 in Poznan, the NGO Young Roma reported.

During the Summit, the prime ministers of the Western Balkans countries adopted a Declaration of Partners from the Western Balkans on the integration of Roma within the process of enlargement of the European Union. By adopting the Declaration, states have committed themselves to continue and improve efforts to achieve equality and full integration of Roma within the framework of regional cooperation and the process of accession to the European Union.

The declaration envisages the achievement of specifically defined goals in the areas of employment, education, housing, health care, documentation and the fight against discrimination. It also envisages the adoption of regional public budgeting standards related to the integration of Roma, and the establishment of official channels and mechanisms for the joint involvement of local governments and Roma communities in policy formulation, as well as adequate mechanisms for monitoring and reporting on the implementation of policies related to the integration of Roma.

The adoption of the Declaration was preceded by the panel "Declaration of the Western Balkan Partnership on Roma and the EU Enlargement: from word to deed". Samir Jaha, the executive director of NGO "Young Roma" spoke at the panel as the representative of the Roma civil sector in the Western Balkans.

Jaha believes that, from the point of view of the Roma community, the Declaration can be perceived differently. Individuals from the community could consider the Declaration as yet another official document that will not be applied, while those who are more active in the community and want to take responsibility for changes in the society could be more optimistic and observe the Declaration as one kind of "Roma Constitution" that should be respected and whose consistent application should be constantly recalled.

Jaha said that the adoption of the Declaration is an incentive for continuing work and joint efforts in the process of Roma integration. He had also pointed out that the Declaration must be seriously accepted by all involved actors - the European Commission as part of the enlargement process and national and local authorities in the Western Balkans - it was announced from NGO "Young Roma".

10 Jul 2019, 00:43 AM

09 July 2019 - Minister of Foreign Affairs Srđan Darmanović participated in an informal meeting of OSCE (Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe) foreign ministers, which took place in the High Tatras, Slovakia, reports the PR office of the Ministry.

The participants exchanged views on the modalities for improving the dialogue and cooperation among the participating countries, as well as restoring confidence and security in the OSCE region. The focus of the discussion was placed on the relevance of the OSCE and the role the Organisation is playing today in light of the current security challenges. The discussion emphasised importance of respecting the key principles on which the international order is based, as well as the importance of the Organisation in their preservation and promotion, pointing to the potential of the OSCE as a unique platform for dialogue and its specificity in terms of having comprehensive mechanisms for effective and rapid action in the prevention, management and resolution of crisis situations.

MFA ministers agreed that it is necessary to demonstrate political will, through effective multilateralism and constructive dialogue, but that declarative readiness for dialogue must be accompanied by implementation in practice. They underlined the need to respect the principles on which the Organisation is based, such as dialogue, compromise, peaceful resolution of conflicts, accountability, and cooperation.

The Montenegrin Foreign Minister stressed that the comprehensive OSCE concept of security is a key segment of the region's common security and that the Organisation has proved itself as a reliable partner and a single forum for open dialogue. In that context, he pledged full support to the current process of the Structural Dialogue on existing and future challenges that is being conducted within the OSCE. He emphasised the importance of respecting the principles and values ​​of the international rule-based order as important preconditions for restoring confidence and security in the OSCE region.

For Montenegro, the OSCE is a strategic partner, to whose principles the country remains committed through supporting its work, missions and respect for integrity, the unique and irreplaceable role of this Organisation, Minister Darmanović concluded.

In a meeting with Minister of the Slovak Republic Miroslav Lajčák, Montenegrin Foreign Minister expressed gratitude for the continued support of Slovakia in the process of European integration. At the meeting with the Finnish head of diplomacy Pekka Haavisto, Minister Darmanović stressed the importance of continuing the enlargement policy, and expressed the expectation that Finland would support this policy during the current EU Council presidency.

Read more about Politics in Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.

09 Jul 2019, 00:42 AM

07 July 2019 - "The Western Balkans Summit in Poznan confirmed a clear European perspective of the Western Balkan countries. That message was conveyed by both the EU and the member states of the Union," Prime Minister Duško Marković told the press at the end of the Summit.

"There is no doubt that the enlargement policy is one of the best EU policies and it contributes to the stability of progress and development. It would be impossible to leave 18 million Western Balkan citizens out of the European space. There is no logic or justification for that. Today, it has been clearly stated that the vision of enlargement to the Western Balkans is alive and that in the Western Balkans we should continue to work to fulfill our obligations," Prime Minister Marković stressed.

The Cabinet of the Prime Minister reported that Marković also added that the sixth Summit of the Western Balkans confirmed the vision of the German Chancellor Angela Merkel as an extension to the enlargement policy. PM Marković said that the Berlin Process contributed to the new values ​​of the Western Balkans as a whole and each country individually.

"We in particular focused on the implementation of the connection agenda, as the infrastructure connectivity is the key to the overall development of the Balkans, especially each country individually. We expressed satisfaction with the degree of infrastructure projects implementation and the approved funds. Montenegro has withdrawn more than EUR 170 million and we are set to continue this way in the future," Prime Minister Marković underlined.

For Montenegro, he added, this Summit is particularly important. The Memorandum on the creation of preconditions for the construction of the International Institute for Sustainable Technologies in South East Europe was signed. Montenegro is the initiator of this project. CERN, European Commission and the Science Commissioner pledged support to this project. The serious efforts of the Government, primarily of the Ministry of Science, have yield results today, and this testifies to the fact that the Western Balkans steadily progress towards the EU.

When asked by journalists whether he talked with Prime Minister Ana Brnabić about the Draft Law on Freedom of Religion, Prime Minister Marković said that he opened the issue with his Serbian counterpart.

"Prime Minister Brnabić asked me what it is about. I said that this is about drafting the law as a programme and constitutional obligation of the Government, based on the standards and principles of not only national legislation but also the Council of Europe," said PM Marković, stressing that the issue of religious communities in Montenegro is currently regulated by the Law of 1977.

"There is no reason for confrontation between the two countries on this issue. We agreed that we should discuss these and other issues directly at the institutional level, and that we will not raise tensions between the two states because we do not need them, " the Prime Minister pointed out.

The Prime Minister assessed the brief conversation with his Serbian counterpart Brnabić as beneficial, hopeful that in the coming days, the conditions will be created for discussing these issues as two neighbouring and friendly countries.

Read more about politics in Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.

08 Jul 2019, 20:53 PM

Vladimir Jokić (Democrats of Montenegro) was replaced from the position of the President of the Kotor Municipality today by the votes of parliamentary majority (17 councilors) made by members of the DPS, SD, HGI, LP and former SDP member Bruna Lončarević at the Bizanti Palace.  

After years of silence, the government of Montenegro gave an announcement today, full of untruths, as it said not because of me, but because of the citizens of Kotor and Montenegro, announced Vladimir Jokić. He reacted to the statement by the Government of Montenegro, which stated, among other things, that Jokić ignored Prime Minister Duško Marković for two years.

There is no excuse for violating the law, and the Government of Montenegro brutally violated it. Neither the Prime Minister's vanity, nor his piquet, nor the insurmountable political differences. Nothing can be an excuse for a violation of the law, unless we are in Frankish Spain where there was a motto that friends can do everything, and that there are laws are for the enemies.

He added that there is no reason to justify the fact that the Government interpreted one point of the Law one way on 30 May and 28 days later the other in favor of their local burglars.

"In fact, there would be no single excuse if it was not a government whose party interest is above general interest, above the interests of the citizens and beyond the state's interest. If I had known that the method to get an answer from the Government and the Prime Minister would be writing open letters, I would have sent each letter by the media…

Now that we have found the way to communicate, I remind you that we have appealed to the Constitutional Court because of the way the DUP Kostanjica has been adopted and, if the state does not engage, we will lose the status of UNESCO - for the sake of the interest of offshore companies. I have also written to you about that several times, as you can see in the archives ", said Jokić.

“Kotor has a history that is measured for millennia, it celebrates the Day of the Municipality on November 21, and whoever wants to take part in this celebration is welcome. Going to Podgorica to receive greetings for the Kotor Municipality Day would be degradation of the city's history at the expense of the Government, which I would never allow myself. There is no function, niether political combination, nor the sort of solution that is worth the dignity of the city. If you had respected the dignity of the same town, the prime minister would announce to the host at least twice when visiting Kotor municipality. This is a question of manners in the end. How many times the state protocol ignored local government, I will not even waste words, " Vladimir Jokić stressed.

Finally, he urged Prime Minister Duško Marković to look at the correspondence he had sent him once again.

Source: "Vijesti"


05 Jul 2019, 01:02 AM

04 July 2019 - President of Montenegro Milo Đukanović received a well-known American political scientist, writer and professor Yoshihiro Francis Fukuyama, who is visiting Montenegro within the program "Prestigious Leadership Academy for Development" organized by the Faculty of Economics and Center for Democratic Transition with the support of the Center for democracy, development and rule of law of Stanford University, the Balkan Trust for Democracy and the German Marshall Fund of the United States.

President Đukanović expressed his satisfaction with the visit of Professor Fukuyama to Montenegro and the opportunity for Montenegrin students to hear his lecture, reported the Office of the President of Montenegro. He also added that Montenegro is a sincere advocate of European and Euro-Atlantic integration, primarily because of the need to adopt the European system of values and achieve European quality of life through the reform process. Noting that he is aware of the unpopularity of demanding reforms, he recalls that in this region we do not have the luxury of further lagging behind the developed Europe.

"With all European weaknesses, integration into the EU is an uncompromising need of the countries of the WB," Đukanović said.

Professor Fukuyama expressed his gratitude for the opportunity for the meeting during his first visit to Montenegro. He said that the reason for his frequent visits to our region was the existence of a confrontation between the two systems, liberal democracy on the one and the system that dominantly came from Russia and other countries. In this context, he welcomed Montenegro's decision to join NATO, stressing that this organization represents the most serious alliance in the world and a mechanism that preserves our values. Pointing to contemporary dangers such as populism, social networks and globalism, he expressed his belief in the survival and victory of a democratic system of values and the development of democracy.

"NATO and the EU are offering much better options than the alternatives we are exposed to," Fukuyama said.

Đukanović and Fukuyama also discussed other current European and global issues.

Read more news about politics in Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.

03 Jul 2019, 00:20 AM

01 July 2019 - Prime Minister of Montenegro Duško Marković hosted an inaugural visit by Ambassador of Finland to Montenegro Kimmo Lähdevirta.

The Prime Minister welcomed Ambassador Lähdevirta and wished him success in his work. He thanked Finland for its support for Montenegro's EU bid, stressing the country's commitment to pursuing reforms in order to achieve European standards. In that regard, the Prime Minister said he is hopeful that during the Finnish presidency, which started yesterday, Montenegro will open the only remaining negotiating chapter and bring to an end the work on reports that will determine the internal willingness to close certain negotiating chapters.

According to the Public Relations Service of the Government of Montenegro report, Ambassador Lähdevirta informed the Prime Minister about the priorities of the Finnish presidency of the Council of the EU, noting that his country will promote the enlargement policy and that all the Western Balkan countries must have a European perspective. Finland, the Ambassador said, advocates for the regatta principle, that is, the individual assessment of the success of each candidate country.

The Prime Minister of Montenegro and the Ambassador of Finland agreed that the two countries have developed high-quality bilateral relations and expressed satisfaction with the fact that economic cooperation has been intensified as well, in particular referring to the cooperation between the Electric Power Industry of Montenegro and the Finnish Fortum on the project of one of the largest solar power plants in Europe . It was concluded that this project could set an example to more Finnish investors in Montenegro.

This meeting also initiated the visit by the Grand Committee of Finland's Parliament to Montenegro.

Read more news about politics in Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.

02 Jul 2019, 02:16 AM

30 June 2019 - Prime ministers of Montenegro and Azerbaijan, Duško Marković and Novruz Mammadov, agreed during the official talks, which took place in Baku recently, that relations between the two countries are very good and friendly, characterised by intense political dialogue and a high level of understanding, with the continuous strengthening of economic cooperation, and that they see a common interest in further intensification of economic cooperation and mutual support at the international level.

"With its modest potential, Montenegro contributes to peace and stability, and supports the sovereignty and independence of its partner countries, including Azerbaijan," Prime Minister Duško Marković stressed.

Public Relations Service within the Government of Montenegro reported that the two prime ministers noted that both countries today enjoy the benefits of hard-won independence, that they are linked by the fact that these are small, multi-ethnic and multi-religious countries that, in their still insufficiently stable regions, significantly boost cooperation within Balkan and Central Asian regions and contributes to world peace by developing good neighbourly relations and showing determination to resolve disputes.

PM Marković expressed satisfaction with the fact that Azerbaijan, by investing hundreds of millions of euros in the Porto Novi tourist resort, has become one of the largest investors in Montenegro, and he invited his Azerbaijani counterpart to visit Montenegro next year to mark the opening of this tourist resort.

"Investments from Azerbaijan contribute to the reputation and perspective of our dynamic economy. I want successful cooperation to continue and expand. I am delighted that you accepted to visit Montenegro next year and see on the field how two friendly countries create new value for the benefit of citizens," Prime Minister Marković pointed out.

Read more news about politics in Montenegro at TMN's dedicated page.

30 Jun 2019, 23:36 PM
June 30, 2019 - Kotor Mayor, Vladimir Jokić, filed a criminal complaint with the Prosecutor's Office in that town after the new assembly's majority cleared the official entrance to Kotor's Assembly Hall in the Byzantine palace in the Old Town.
As the reason for applying a criminal complaint, Jokić cites the protection of the constitutional and legal order of the Montenegrin state, the protection of the law and the legitimate interests of the local population, as well as the prevention of further criminal offenses.
Kotor Municipal Assembly premises entered the elected members of the commission, formed on Friday, 28 June, after the Democratic Party of Socialists (DPS) Željko Avramović was chosen to perform President of the Municipal Assembly, convened by the new assembly majority in the hotel Vardar.
Recall, President of the Assembly of Kotor Dragica Perovic convened the local government session on 10 July.
DPS chairman Željko Avramavić, who was elected in hotel Vardar to perform the President of the Kotor Municipal Assembly until an election of its President, told Radio Kotor that on Friday, at 5.30 pm, a multiparty committee waived the entrance of the local parliament to the Byzantine palace.
The commission was composed of DPS officials and Bruna Lončarević, who SDP withdrew from the party for causing a power crisis in Kotor.
"Despite my attempts to get in touch with the President of the municipality, Jokic, I did not succeed, and neither Mrs. Perovic did answer the phone all day. After that, I decided to form a commission to clear the office. In this way conditions have been created for the assembly to function generally on Monday," Avramovic said on Friday.
President of the municipality Vladimir Jokić told Radio Kotor that "an attack on the state-legal system and the Montenegrin Constitution occurred on that day in Kotor."
Mayor Vladimir Jokić (Democrats of Montenegro) announced that he would file a complaint with the State Prosecutor's Office in Kotor against the decision-maker and the perpetrator of "this violence."
"A group of people who were not the first to tear down the premises and remove the seals, made that bastard tonight. I'll file the criminal complaint against them tomorrow. It is the unseen bastard and violence by which the DPS and Bruna Lončarević are trying to take power," Mayor Jokic said on Friday.
He pointed out that it was particularly tragic that the directors of public institutions - Neđeljko Moškov (director of the Public Institution Resource Center for the Hearing Diseases) and Srđan Dragomanović, director of the Nursing Home, who was convicted for a call on the Jokić line, participated in it.
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