Belgrade, 11 April 2012
Expiry of the Terms of Office of the Asylum Commission Members
The terms of office of the members of the Asylum Commission, which reviews complaints against the decisions on asylum applications taken by the Asylum Office, are to expire on 17 April 2012. The Government of the Republic of Serbia is under the obligation to appoint the Asylum Commission members before the terms of office of the current members expire and thus enable the unhindered exercise of the right to asylum guaranteed under the Constitution of the Republic of Serbia.
The Asylum Commission comprises nine members appointed to four-year terms of office by the Government. The Asylum Act lays down that the Commission members shall have a degree in law and minimum five years of working experience in law and be familiar with human rights regulations.
We call on the Government of the RS to abide by the deadline for appointing the Commission members and implement the below-described model during their recruitment. This model has proven successful elsewhere in the region; it is in accordance with the valid regulations in this field and does not necessitate in amending the national Asylum Act.
This model entails the recruitment of members among civil servants which possess an active knowledge of English, apart from the requirements prescribed by the law;
among teachers of law-related subjects at social science colleges with a commendable professional track record in human rights protection;
and the recruitment of members from among representatives of NGOs focusing on human rights promotion and protection.
We believe that the adoption of this model would eliminate the risk of representatives of authorities participating in activities and the adoption of first-instance decisions also participating in the adoption of the second-instance decisions by the Asylum Commission.
Beogradski centar za ljudska prava
Inicijativa za razvoj i saradnju (IDC)
Beogradski centar za bezbednosnu politiku (BCBP)
Komitet pravnika za ljudska prava – YUCOM
Centar za ljudska prava-Nis