Bearing in mind the unofficial data that several persons have been arrested on Saturday morning (17 October 2015) during police action against demonstrators in Podgorica, and that the police has caused bodily injuries to Gojko Raičević, editor of portal IN4S, as well as to some other persons, we would like to remind that any form of torture of citizens by the police is strictly forbidden, as well as of the presumption of police responsibility for all injuries caused during and after arresting.
NGOs HRA, Juventas and CeMI urge the State Prosecutor to promptly conduct an impartial investigation of the police actions.
Bearing in mind as well that the European Committee for the Prevention of Torture (CPT) in its report from 2013 found that arrested persons in Montenegro are exposed to substantial risk of police abuse, we urge the Police Director and the Minister of the Interior to ensure prohibition of any kind of abuse of the arrested, as well as respect for other rights. The arrested persons have the right to hire an attorney and to be taken before the State Prosecutor without delay, within no later than 24 hours (as allowed by the last amendments to the Criminal Procedure Code), who will either order their release or exceptionally, determine further detention, if necessary.
HRA, Juventas and CeMI protest the fact that the journalists have been prevented from doing their job to report on arrests carried out by the police in a public place, i.e. performing their official duties on behalf of citizens of Montenegro.
Two journalists have been arrested – Gojko Raičević, the editor of portal IN4S, who was also beaten according to information reported by his wife, and journalist of daily Dan, Dražen Živković, who was also handcuffed. HRA will monitor misdemeanour proceedings that will be conducted against both of them.
HRA, Juventas and CeMI believe that the Ministry of the Interior, i.e. the Police Directorate acted irresponsibly by not issuing any information to the public on this mornings’ police performance until now (14:30h), which is more than 8 hours since the police action.
Tea Gorjanc Prelević, NGO Human Rights Action – HRA
Ivana Vujović, NGO Juventas
Zlatko Vujović, NGO Center for Monitoring and research – CeMI