Today, Mr. Zoran Pašalić, the Protector of Citizens and his associates participated, via video conference, in the meeting of Euroasian Ombudsman Alliance devoted to the 75 anniversary of the victory over fascism. The meeting was initiated by Ms. Tatiana Nikolayevna Moskalkova, High Commissioner for Human Rights in the Russian Federation.

Celebrating the victory in World War II is an essential activity for the citizens of Serbia, primarily because of a large number of victims it suffered in the fight for freedom in the former Yugoslavia. Out of the 1,700,000 victims, between 500,000 and 700,000 innocent people, mostly Serbs, Jews and Roma, died in the Jasenovac concentration camp in the Independent State of Croatia alone. The only child concentration camp during the War, where thousands of children died just because they had different religion and nationality, was situated on the territory of this state.

In the second part of the meeting, dedicated to the best practices of the Ombudsmen and National Human Rights Institutions during COVID-19 pandemic, Mr. Pašalić pointed out that the Protector of Citizens had organized the work, even before the declaration of the state of emergency, so that the Institution was able to receive the citizens’ complaints which, at that point, increased tenfold. He highlighted that the state managed to save the elderly population in the health crisis, and to put the life and health of its citizens before the economy. Mr. Pašalić explained that in the ensuing meetings it should be discussed how to fight the consequences of the coronavirus pandemic.

The meeting ended with a proposal to adopt a Resolution of the Eurasian Ombudsmen Alliance dedicated to the 75th anniversary of the end of Second World War, which is expected to be adopted in the coming days by the participants in the meeting.