Serbia: Inter-party dialogue for the benefit of the citizens of Serbia – letter from the EP ombudsman

The inter-party dialogue process, mediated jointly by the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia and the European Parliament, will take an important step forward today, reports Blic, publishing the letter of the EP ombudsman.

Following the start of the dialogue on 1 March, a critical phase of stakeholder consultation is under way.

This consultation phase is key to developing a sustainable and realistic agenda for cross-party dialogue and identifying all of these elements that can help achieve a political consensus. We will discuss, and most importantly, listen carefully to what parliamentary groups in the National Assembly and political platforms currently outside parliament have to say on some of the most important issues for Serbia’s democracy.

This week, we will meet individually with representatives of parliamentary groups in the National Assembly, and after Easter, we will have one-on-one meetings with opposition platforms that had decided not to run in the last general election. It is clear that we expect all participants in the dialogue to approach these talks in a positive and constructive way.

These individual meetings will help us assess the level of commitment, willingness and ability to reach consensus in order to improve the political climate before the next elections. We strongly believe that the citizens of Serbia deserve the opportunity to elect their representatives in the electoral process as freely and fairly as possible, as well as to be properly informed about the various programs and political positions taken by parties or platforms. participatory. In this regard, we rely on the government, the ruling parliamentary majority and the opposition to take full responsibility and work together to achieve this goal.

Importers It is important to note that this process is based on cooperation, consensus and trust. That is why the President of the National Assembly of the Republic of Serbia, Ivica Dačić, is also mediating in it. We are very grateful for his support, as well as for the support of the National Assembly and its services, which is the key to the success of this effort. We hope to work closely with Parliament Speaker Ivica Dačić in the coming weeks and months to develop a real agenda for cross-party dialogue and achieve tangible results.

This fruitful cooperation with the National Assembly helped during the first phase of the inter-party dialogue in 2019, when we worked with political actors and the government at the highest level and reached a consensus on a wide range of specific results needed to improve electoral conditions. . However, according to the ODIHR election observation report, there is still room for improvement in this area.

We know that there are many questions about the second phase of cross-party dialogue and the role of the European Parliament. The basic idea that governs it, similar to the first phase, is to provide a platform for dialogue between different political parties or platforms in order to find mutually acceptable solutions through consensus on issues of national interest that are essential. for the development of a pluralistic and credible democracy.

In this process, the European Parliament takes on its role very modestly. We are not here to bring ready-made solutions or to impose or support the positions of one or another political party. We are here to support the complex process, and as committed politicians and Democrats, we believe that without dialogue and a willingness to compromise, there will be no successful democratic process that addresses the key problems in our societies.

The European Union and its Member States strongly support the process of inter-party dialogue. The European Commission’s latest progress report mentions dialogue many times. Through the adoption of the resolution on Serbia’s 2019-2020 progress report, the European Parliament strongly supports and instructs the ombudsman to assist the National Assembly in its efforts to build consensus and trust across the political spectrum.

We are fully committed to this process and work hard to achieve tangible results. “Our last wish is to help make further progress for Serbia and its citizens on the European path through this process,” the letter concludes.

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