“Together for LGBT Rights”: Reaction Regarding Lawyer Marković’s threats

The Coalition “Together for LGBT Rights” most decidedly condemns hate speech directed to the LGBTIQ community and our allies by lawyer Velibor Marković and simultaneously extends support to the journalist of the “Vijesti” Damira Kalač, who filed a complaint against Marković as a citizen, due to threats made on the social network Facebook.

Considering that lawyer Marković in his attempt to justify hate speech and open threats, invokes the Constitution, we want to remind that the Constitution of Montenegro explicitly prohibits “infliction or encouragement of hatred or intolerance on any grounds” (Article 7).

Every person in Montenegro has the right to express their gender identity and sexual orientation, which is explicitly guaranteed by the Law on Prohibition of Discrimination, which also prohibits hate speech. No individual should be allowed to arbitrarily restrict the freedom of any citizen of Montenegro and especially not to make open threats to those who stand in defense of basic human rights and freedoms. We are particularly concerned that hate speech and threats were used by someone who may find himself professionally representing a member of the LGBTIQ community, which obviously affects his objective judgment of such a person.

Lawyer Marković’s posts and comments on social media, directed to journalist Kalač and the LGBTIQ community, are the epitome of intolerance and hatred and are directly threatening. Therefore, the Coalition requires a prompt response and adequate processing of this case in accordance with the law by the relevant authorities to which the case was reported.

We especially appeal to the Bar Association of Montenegro to react urgently and decisively, and determine the violation of legal ethics in this case. We remind that the Code of Professional Ethics of Lawyers also indicates “a special type and high degree of professional and moral responsibility of lawyers” and that “the importance and reputation of the legal profession as a whole depends on the manner of work and behaviour of each lawyer.” The basis of a lawyer’s professional ethics and responsibility is to “serve the interests of justice and to be obliged to contribute to the rule of law and a society based on respect for the law via his professional and other public actions and personal example.” A lawyer “should be aware of his responsibility at all times and harmonise his actions with it” (Principle I, Fundamentals of Professional Ethics and Responsibility, Code of Professional Ethics of Lawyers of the Bar Association of Montenegro).

It is of particular concern that someone who is a lawyer with a long practice of law does not actually know the Constitution or interprets it in a layman’s and banal way, claiming that freedom of expression means that anyone can say whatever comes to mind to them, to insult, slander, ridicule and spread hatred and intolerance.

Montenegro must be a country of free citizens, the rule of law and human rights. All relevant institutions are obliged to, via uncompromising application of the law, enable every LGBTIQ person in Montenegro to express their personality, which includes sexual orientation or gender identity, freely and without fear at any time and in any place.

Press release signed by the members of the Coalition “Together for LGBT Rights”: Institute Alternative, Queer Montenegro, Human Rights Action (HRA), Centre for Civic Education (CCE), Spectra Association, CAZAS, CeMI, Ministry of Culture, Center for the Development of Non-Governmental Organisations (CDNGO), LBTQ Women’s Association “Stana”, SOS telephone Nikšić, Montenegrin Women’s Lobby, NGO Juventas, CEDEM, Anima, Clinical Centre of Montenegro and Ministry for Human and Minority Rights.

Public Call for NGO, Media, Syndicate and Informal Groups Representatives for Training on Public Assemblies


Training on Public Assemblies
-European standards and real life

Institute Alternative (IA) in partnership with Human Rights Action (HRA) is implementing ‘’Voice Your Rights! – Expanding Space for Free Assemblies” project, supported by European Union, which intends to change the worrying trend of narrowing the space for activism and assembly in public space.

In this regard, we are organising a two-days online training for those who are interested to learn about the standards and best practices for organising, monitoring and awareness-raising in the area of public assembly.

The training is primarily organised for representatives of civil society organisations active in the field of human rights, journalists who report on public assemblies, representatives of trade unions and informal groups that often organise public assemblies. Therefore, we especially encourage them to apply for the training that can be useful in their further work. During the training, participants will have the opportunity to hear the experiences of international experts in this field.

Due to the threat of the spread of the COVID-19 virus, the training will be conducted online, via Zoom app, on 30 and 31 July 2020.

Feel free to forward this public call to anyone who might find it useful.

Candidates who are interested can send their application to email address info@institut-alternativa.org, with subject ”Application for training course on public assemblies” by 20. July 2020, by 5 PM.

You can send any additional questions on the same email, and on the results of your applications we will inform you by 25 July. Agenda and other details of the training will be provided to the selected participants. Number of the participants is limited.

The application must consist of short motivation letter, stating the reasons for applying. With the motivation letter a CV should also be submitted.

Part of the training will be in English but simultaneous translation is provided.

For any additional questions feel free to contact 020 268 686 or info@institut-alternativa.org.

We hope that you find this training interesting and look forward to your application!

IA and HRA are implementing the project ‘’Voice Your Rights! – Expanding Space for Free Assemblies” supported by European Union through the Instrument for Democracy and Human Rights, Program for Montenegro 2018

Together for LGBT Rights

The Coalition “Together for LGBT Rights” congratulates LGBTIQ persons on the adoption of the Law on Same Sex Life Partnership.

We welcome the decision of the Parliament of Montenegro to adopt the Draft Law.

We thank all the MPs who voted that persons belonging to sexual minorities can also make official life together with the person they love.

We thank the Ministry of Human and Minority Rights, as the proposer of this Law, and with whose support and commitment the legal recognition of same-sex partnership has become a reality.

The adoption of this Law is a victory for the idea that human rights belong to everyone, regardless of sexual orientation or other characteristics.

By adopting the Law, Montenegro contributes to the respect of human rights and introduction of European values.

Therefore, we hope that this step forward that Montenegro has made in the field of human rights will be just the beginning of full acceptance of LGBTIQ people in Montenegrin society with the enjoyment of the same rights based on the principle of equality and equity.

On behalf of the coalition “Together for LGBT Rights”, the statement is signed by:

Queer Montenegro
Human Rights Action (HRA)
Centre for Civic Education (CCE)
Spectra Association
Ministry of Culture
Center for the Development of Non-Governmental Organisations (CDNGO)
LBTQ Women’s Association “Stana”
SOS telephone Nikšić
Montenegrin Women’s Lobby
NGO Juventas
Institute Alternative