The Monitoring Committee notes that Montenegro is a reliable
and constructive partner to the Council of Europe, that it plays
a positive role in the stabilisation of the region and has made
progress in fulfilling its commitments and obligations since its
accession in 2007. The country has moved forward in the five “key issues”
identified by the Parliamentary Assembly in 2012, namely the independence
of the judiciary, the situation of the media, the fight against
corruption and organised crime, the rights of minorities and the
fight against discrimination, and the situation of refugees and
internally displaced persons.
However, the committee invites Montenegro to pursue policies
focusing on democratic standards, consolidation of the rule of law,
enhanced transparency and accountability of public institutions
and the equitable representation of minorities.
Given Montenegro’s determination to continue its reform process
in the framework of the accession negotiations to the European Union,
the committee proposes closing the monitoring procedure in respect
of Montenegro and engaging in post-monitoring dialogue.
But it also underlines the importance of implementing the
adopted legislation, and therefore expects the country to implement
a series of reforms – concerning the electoral process, the independence
of the judiciary, the fight against corruption and organised crime
and the situation of the media – by the end of 2017, failing which
the committee will propose considering reopening the full monitoring
procedure in respect of Montenegro.