Montenegro's opposition wants Serbian as official

Montenegro's opposition wants Serbian as official

Leader of the New Serbian Democracy (NOVA) Andrija Mandic stated on Monday that the Montenegrin opposition will not back constitutional changes in the justice sector if the highest legal act does not change in the part that refers to the status of the Serbian language and state symbols.

Montenegrin Prime Minister Igor Luksic will confer with representatives of the opposition as regards constitutional changes in the judiciary area which are necessary for Montenegro's further path toward the EU.

One of the conditions set by Brussels for Montenegro to launch EU accession talks is embodied in the section that refers to the appointment of heads of judiciary sectors and prosecutor's offices so that they could ensure greater independence of the judiciary.

Constitutional changes refer to the appointment of the president of the Supreme Court and members of the Judicial and Prosecutorial Council.

The Montenegrin Constitution can be modified in the area of the judiciary only if a two-third majority is ensured in the parliament.

Mandic told Tanjug that the opposition would not back constitutional changes in the area of judiciary if the highest legal act is not amended in the part that refers to the status of the Serbian language and state symbols.

He reiterated that the opposition's main requests are for the Serbian language to be declared official, for the tricolour flag to be proclaimed a national flag and for the statute of limitations to be abolished for criminal cases of organised crime and corruption.

NOVA will not give up on its request for the Serbian language to be defined in the Constitution as an official language in Montenegro, because it is the language spoken by a majority of citizens.

Also, the party requires that the tricolour flag should be declared a national flag since it has historical basis in the Montenegrin tradition, Mandic said.

He noted that the opposition requires for the presidents of the Supreme Court and the Prosecutor's Office to be appointed by a two-third majority in the Montenegrin parliament.