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          • Year: 2018
          • Security system of the Republic of Serbia: constitutional aspects

          • Prof. dr Bogoljub Milosavljević in the new BCSP publication analyzes how the security system of the Republic of Serbia is regulated in the Constitution of 2006 and gives recommendations for its improvement, taking in account leassons learned from serbian constitutional tradition, as well as exemplary comparative solutions in this area.

        • The 2006 Constitution of the Republic of Serbia regulates a number of issues in connection with the security system of the Republic of Serbia. However, it fails to define all elements of the system or to offer reliable premises for concluding what the security system represents in terms of organization and function, who manages it and how, or how the democratic and civil control and public oversight of the actors in the system are ensured. The term “security system” is not even mentioned in the text of the Constitution, which, furthermore, uses very inconsistent terminology regarding security.

           

          The RS Constitution regulates the Serbian Army in a slightly more detailed though incomplete manner. When it comes to security services, however, it sets forth only that they are supervised by the National Assembly, while in the case of police it states only that police members cannot join political parties. The National Security Council is not regulated by the Constitution, while the competences of the highest authorities in the management of the security system are just partly regulated. Out of all strategic documents, the
          RS Constitution refers only to the defense strategy and
          stipulates for the Serbian Army alone that it is under democratic
          and civil control.

           

          None of the former Serbian or Yugoslav constitutions had a systematized section on security. Although some constitutional solutions of the same issues mostly differed and rarely coincided, we can still observe similarities regarding the scope of regulated issues and in the majority of cases also a gradual progress in their modernization.

           

          The key findings of the comparative analysis which are of importance for the improvement of solutions provided by the RS Constitution in the field of security refer to the (1) scope of constitutional regulation; (2) strategic documents; (3) national security council; (4) command of the army; (5) mission of the army and its use outside the relevant country’s borders; (6) security service and police, and (7) state of war, state of emergency and other states of danger.

           

          Compared to the RS Constitution, most analyzed constitutions have a somewhat wider scope of regulation of the area of security, and some with a significantly wider scope of regulation are highlighted. The number of constitutions that call for the adoption of strategic documents in the field of security is relatively small, while the security and/or defense councils and similar bodies are constitutional categories in a large number of countries, most frequently as standing bodies playing an advisory role, and more rarely playing the role of proponent or decision-maker, or performing the control function.

           

          The author concludes with a set of recommendations. First of all, the scope of regulation of the security system in the Constitution should be expanded in such a way as to regulate all the most important issues that make up the fundamentals of this system, which could be systematized in a separate constitutional chapter. The Constitution should define this system, determine its basic principles, as well as define missions and goals of the Serbian Army, the police and the security services. National Security Strategy and National Security Council belong to the constitutional matter, and the provisions on the use of the Army outside state borders should be more detailed and flexible. The Constitution should envision prerequisites for the declaration of a state of war and determine the obligation to adopt a law on a state of emergency; standards regarding the suspension of human and minority rights during these states of danger should be upgraded in accordance with the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.

        • Tags: constitution, Constitution of Serbia, Constitutional reforms, security system
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