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International Information Centre for Balkan Studies



OSCE Fears Tensions Ahead of Montenegro Election

As the deadline for elections in Montenegro nears, the OSCE's Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights has expressed concern over political tensions and poor levels of media freedom.

Read more: OSCE Fears Tensions Ahead of Montenegro Election

Gabriela Firea was sworn in as Bucharest mayor on Thursday evening, June 23, 2016

Several members of her party, the Social Democratic Party PSD, attended the ceremony, including party president Liviu Dragnea.

Read more: Gabriela Firea was sworn in as Bucharest mayor on Thursday evening, June 23, 2016

Anti-PKK operations over, time for reconstruction: Turkish PM

Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım has declared the end of military operations in Turkey’s southeast and said the government is entering a “second phase” by launching a massive campaign for the reconstruction of cities damaged by clashes between the security forces and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK).  

Read more: Anti-PKK operations over, time for reconstruction: Turkish PM

Tensions High at Mass Protest in Macedonian Capital

Tens of thousands of people showed up at the massive anti-government rally in Macedonia’s capital Skopje on Monday evening - which took place amid high tensions after the authorities missed a deadline to meet key demands.

Read more: Tensions High at Mass Protest in Macedonian Capital

Bulgaria MPs Back Nationwide Burqa Ban

Parliamentarians have given overwhelmingly support for a draft law banning the wearing of veils in public places, with only ethnic Turkish MPs voting against.

Read more: Bulgaria MPs Back Nationwide Burqa Ban

Is ‘illiberal democracy’ catching up to Croatia or not?

 

 

 

Croatians insist they are culturally and geographically, central European. However, with the rise of “illiberal democracy” in nearby countries such as Hungary, Poland and to a lesser extent Slovakia, and after Austria almost elected a far-right politician as its president, one might ask if Croatia would be well-advised to play down its central European credentials. Or are there, in fact, signs that illiberal democracy is spreading into Croatia?

Read more: Is ‘illiberal democracy’ catching up to Croatia or not?

Serbia Leader Scraps Planned US-Brussels Tour

Serbian Prime Minister Aleksandar Vucic has confirmed that he has cancelled scheduled visits to Washington and Brussels - but without clarifying the exact reasons.

Read more: Serbia Leader Scraps Planned US-Brussels Tour

Bosniak leader pays tribute to Serb victims

Bosniak leader Bakir Izetbegovic, one of Bosnia's three heads of state, has paid tribute to civilians murdered by Muslims during the Bosnian war in 1993.

Read more: Bosniak leader pays tribute to Serb victims

Albanian Minority Party One Step Closer to Serbian Government

After many years of conflicts and cold relations, there is a glimmer of hope for cooperation between the state of Serbia and its Albanian minority.

Read more: Albanian Minority Party One Step Closer to Serbian Government

The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia: Recommendations of the Senior Experts' Group on systemic Rule of Law issues relating to the communications interception revealed in spring 2015. Brussels, 8 June 2015

Background and working methodology: In light of the large number of illegally intercepted communications, which have been published at regular intervals since 9 February 2015, and in particular of the systemic problems which they have revealed or confirmed, the European Commission (DG Neighbourhood Policy and Enlargement Negotiations) recruited a group of independent1 senior rule of law experts to carry out a rapid analysis of the situation and provide recommendations to address these issues. The group's expert members have extensive professional experience in a variety of rule of law related fields (law enforcement, interception of communications, the prosecution service and the judiciary, human rights, transition reform) and were already familiar with the country from previous professional assignments for the European Commission, the Council of Europe and other organisations. The group was led by retired Commission Director, Reinhard Priebe.

Read more: The Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia: Recommendations of the Senior Experts' Group on...

Croatia's Ruling HDZ Calls for PM's Dismissal

The leader of the senior ruling coalition party, the Croatian Democratic Union, HDZ, said he will file a motion for the dismissal of PM Tihomir Oreskovic, deepening the country's political crisis.

Read more: Croatia's Ruling HDZ Calls for PM's Dismissal

No Agreement on Bosnia's Coordination Mechanism

Bosnian authorities failed to reach an agreement on a coordinated management system for the government, a discord that could cost the country a chance at EU candidacy.

Read more: No Agreement on Bosnia's Coordination Mechanism

Romanian Social Democrats Win Local Elections

The leftist Social Democrat Party, PSD, came out on top in the local elections in Romania, according to exit polls, but voter turnout was low at 48.4 per cent.

Read more: Romanian Social Democrats Win Local Elections

Croatia's PM Urges Both his Deputies to Quit

Prime Minister Tihomir Oreskovic has called on his two quarrelling Vice Prime Ministers, Tomislav Karamarko and Bozo Petrov, to step down in order to stabilize the country.

Read more: Croatia's PM Urges Both his Deputies to Quit

Divided Montenegro Marks Decade of Independence

Montenegro marks the tenth anniversary of its independence in 2006, still facing old divisions between supporters and opponents of the former union with Serbia.

Montenegro's parliament holds a special session on Friday marking the tenth anniversary of the day when the former Yugoslav republic quit its loose "state union" with Serbia.

Read more: Divided Montenegro Marks Decade of Independence

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