News - November 2011

- 29-30 November, 2011, Vukovar: Representatives of the Center for Peace – Vukovar, Mrs. Milena Babić, Ms. Milica Mutić and Mr. Drago Pepić, participated in the second workshop / training on "Representation of special interest in the system of territorial self-government", organized by the Croatian Institute for Local Government (HILS) from Osijek, in partnership with the Vukovar-Srijem County within the framework of the project "Equality Scan". Topics covered in this training were "Units of territorial self-government and the local community" - a system of territorial government, the functions of units of territorial self-government and decentralization processes, structure and methodology of the bodies of territorial self-government, public needs and their establishment procedure; and "Holders of special interests and their role in the system of territorial self-government "- citizens, associations, councils and representatives of national minorities in the process of representation of their special interests in the system of territorial self-government, organization and networking, work methodology, relations and communication with the bodies of territorial self-government. The workshop was attended by representatives of NGOs and councils of national minorities from Vukovar-Srijem County.

- 29 November, 2011, Sarajevo (Bosnia and Herzegovina): Representatives of the Center for Peace – Vukovar, Mr. Branislav Tekić and Mr. Ljubomir Mikić, participated in the thematic conference of the Igman Initiative. The conference presented a document prepared by expert team "Problems of citizens' status and property caused by the break-up of former Yugoslavia." Drafting of the document and the organization of the conference was supported by the European Union. The conference was attended by representatives of competent ministries of Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Montenegro and Croatia, international organizations and NGOs dealing with this issue.

- 22- 25 November, 2011, Palić (Serbia): Representatives of the Center for Peace – Vukovar, Mrs. Ankica Mikić and Mr. Branislav Tekić, attended the third working meeting within the scope of the project “Development of the Civil Society Network in the Western Balkans region", implemented by the Group 484 from Belgrade with the support of the OSCE Mission to Serbia. Topics of the working meeting were: "Successful completion of the political process: Towards closing of the refugee's file in the Western Balkans?"; "The role of the civil society after the signing of the Joint Ministerial Declaration on ending of the prolonged refugee crisis in Southeast Europe - the attitude of the government and international organizations"; Review of the recent amendments to the legal framework for housing care and purchase of apartments in Croatia"; the planning of activities of the network in 2012 and presentation of activities - strengths and weaknesses of the official website of the Network -  http://www.migracije.org. At meeting draft conclusions of the third working meeting was adopted, will be made public after coordination and text editing. The task force drafted conclusions in terms of work in 2012 supported unanimously by civil society organizations participating in the regional network.

- 16 November, 2011. As a result of the joint work of civil society organizations participating in the regional network, within the framework of the project Support to civil society in finding durable solutions for refugees and internally displaced persons in the Western Balkans", a publicly released document on Free Legal Aid was published, entitled "Access to Free Legal Aid for displaced persons in the Western Balkan countries: Overview of the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Serbia and Montenegro". This document was drafted by a group of experts from the region and is published at: http://reliefweb.int/node/458930

- 3 November, 2011, Zagreb: Representative of the Center for Peace – Vukovar, Ms. Milica Mutić, attended a public discussion on the implementation of the National Programme for the Protection and Promotion of Human Rights 2008 – 2011, for the previous three-year period, organized by the Centre for Human Rights and the Office for Human Rights of the Republic of Croatia. Public discussion was organized with the aim of monitoring the implementation and the impact of the National Programme for the Protection and Promotion of Human Rights in the final year of its implementation. Achievements to date are set forth in the Progress Reports for 2008, 2009 and 2010 and the Center for Human Rights produced an external evaluation of the effect of the Programme for the period 2008 - 2010 based on the views of civil society organizations. During this public discussion, a document drafted by the expert working group for drafting the new National Programme for the Protection and Promotion of Human Rights from 2012 – 2016 was presented.

- 2 November, 2011, Beograd (Serbia) – Representatives of the Center for Peace – Vukovar, Mrs. Ankica Mikić and Mr. Branislav Tekić, participated in the conference "Working Towards the National Policy on Human Rights Defenders", organized by the OSCE Mission to Serbia in cooperation with the UN OHCHR (UN Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights) and YUCOM from Belgrade (The Lawyer’s Committee for Human Rights). The conference was held under the auspices of the Ministry for Human and Minority Rights, Public Administration and Local Self-Government of the Republic of Serbia - Directorate for Human and Minority Rights. The aim of the conference was to analyze the situation of human rights defenders and their perception by the public and to recommend actions and mechanisms that could contribute to creating a positive environment for their activities. Conference attendees were local and foreign experts who deal with issues of human rights defenders, organizations active in protection and promotion of human rights in Serbia and abroad, as well as representatives of respective authorities of the Republic of Serbia.