The Protector of Citizens, Zoran Pašalić, MSc, took part on Tuesday, 17 November 2020, in the fourth international conference organized by the High Commissioner for Human Rights in the Russian Federation entitled “"Human Rights Protection in Eurasia: Exchange of Best Practices among Ombudspersons".
Within the panel "Lessons Learnt From The Pandemic: New Realities Of The Meaning Of Human Rights", the Protector of Citizens, among other things, pointed out that we were witnessing a global pandemic of a virus that affected not only our daily lives, but also the course of economic, political and all other trends, and that the Ombudsman institution was needed more than ever before.
The ombudsmen are tasked with not allowing measures to protect the population from infectious diseases such as COVID-19 to result in gross violations of citizens' rights, and that it is necessary to assess the proportionality of these measures in relation to citizens' rights, Pašalić has pointed out. He emphasized to the participants of the panel that in such extraordinary circumstances within which the Constitution of the Republic of Serbia allows necessary derogations from human and minority rights, the Protector of Citizens, as an independent state body for human rights protection, intensified monitoring and extended its work to 24/7 regime so that the citizens of the Republic of Serbia could exercise their rights even in emergencies.
Mr. Zoran Pašalić said that the operation of the Protector of Citizens during the state of emergency had been based on preventive-advisory activities, mediation between the complainant and administrative bodies, issuing initiatives to amend regulations to the competent authorities, investigations of control on field and acting upon citizens' complaints.