Montenegro’s Human Rights Ombudsman and UNHCR signed a Technical Cooperation Agreement, with the aim of carrying out joint activities in the area of protection and promotion of human rights of asylum seekers, refugees, displaced persons and stateless persons.
Under the Agreement, the two institutions will be exchanging information and collaborate in training activities on the exercise of human rights by asylum seekers, refugees, displaced persons and stateless persons, such as access to the territory and asylum procedures, compliance with human rights law, international humanitarian law and refugee law, reception conditions and socio-economic integration of refugees.
Also, the Agreement envisages the exchange of information in relation to relevant legislation, as well as the provision of inputs for the purposes of reporting and research. UNHCR and the Ombudsman’s Office are also planning joint participation in relevant training courses, meetings, conferences and seminars, especially with a view to building the capacity of relevant authorities, civil society and main stakeholders.
UNHCR Representative in Montenegro, Roberta Montevecchi, pointed out that the signing of the Agreement comes at the right time, in view of the new Law on International and Temporary Protection of Foreigners and the expected new Law on Foreigners.
“This year, we will be working on building the capacities of the authorities and organizing training courses in connection with the implementation of the Law on International and Temporary Protection of Foreigners, and already there we see a concrete and timely possibility for cooperation with the Ombudsman. Also, the new Law on Foreigners, which is expected to be adopted soon, will cover matters of common interest such as statelessness prevention and response, so we may collaborate in this area as well“, said Ms. Montevecchi.
The Protector of Human Rights and Freedoms of Montenegro (Ombudsman), Šućko Baković, also expressed pleasure about the signing of the Agreement.
“With this Agreement we want to take our cooperation to a higher level, as there are justifiable reasons for that. I agree that the new legal regulations are a great challenge for Montenegro’s authorities, especially with regard to their implementation. Without consistent implementation, there can be no rule of the law, and I hope we will create room for joint activities in that area. We expect that this agreement will enhance our excellent cooperation and that we will do more for asylum seekers, displaced persons and stateless persons or those at risk of statelessness“, said Mr. Baković.