On the occasion of 26 June, the United Nations International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, the Protector of Citizens is pleased to establish that, during a series of night and unannounced visits conducted this year to places of detention,  he did not receive a single complaint reporting torture, which represents a progress in comparison to previous years.

The Protector of Citizens expects the competent bodies to prevent any form of abuse. The Protector of Citizens will, in the capacity of the National Preventive Mechanism, continue with undiminished intensity his control visits to places where people are deprived of their liberty. From the beginning of 2015 to date, 54 control visits have been conducted.

Prevention of torture and uncompromised fight against any inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment are one of the key preconditions for preserving the dignity of all citizens.

In the upcoming period, special attention will be paid to the procedures for the protection of sources of information in cases of torture from any kind of reprisal resulting from contact with the Protector of Citizens.

Read more ...Deputy Ombudsman Gordana Stevanovic and representatives of the National Preventive Mechanism held a final meeting with thePresidentof the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture Mycola Gnatovskyy, who was with his team was in the two-week monitoring institutions where are persons  deprived of their liberty.The main topics of the meeting were: the authority and powers of the NPM, cooperation with the competent authorities, as well as the problems and challenges that  NPM encountered during their work. Members of the Committee commended the work of the NPM and stressed the importance of your work and in addition to insufficient staffing.

In performing duties of NPM, Protector of Citizens in June 2014 conducted a night visit to the police department Krusevac, after which was sent the Report on the visit (with the recommendations) to the Institution and the responsible ministry. Police department Krusevac in August 2014, submitted a response stating the compliance with most of the recommendations, but due to lack of material resources, a detention premises were not renovated. In order to proceed further with the recommendations, police department Krusevac in January 2015, informed the Protector of Citizens that it has been equipping two new detention facilities, in accordance with applicable standards. Acting of the police department Krusevac contributes to improving the situation of persons deprived of their liberty and represent an example of good practice of cooperation with the Protector of Citizens / NPM.

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On 22nd of December, in the premises of the Ombudsman of the Republic of Serbia, a meeting was held with representatives of the National Preventive Mechanism of Ukraine, who were visiting the Republic of Serbia, from 22nd to 24th of December in 2014. Deputy Ombudsman, Milos Jankovic presented the institution of the Ombudsman, as well as the work of NPM Serbia. During the visit, representatives of NPM of Serbian and NPM of Ukraine carried out several joint visits to institutions where are persons which are deprived of their liberty (prison, police stations, psychiatric hospitals and social care). On this occasion NPM of Ukraine will be informed about the activities of these institutions, and will have the opportunity to take on, practical way, meet with the methodology of performing NPM visit the Republic of Serbia.

The Protector of Citizens, in his capacity of the National Preventive Mechanism (NPM), with the support of the OSCE Mission to Serbia and UNHCR, on 27 November 2014 organized “The First South-East European OPCAT Forum” and on 28 November 2014, the Conference "Prevention of torture and other forms of ill-treatment and the fight against impunity". Both events were held in Belgrade.