Introduction to the content of the negotiation chapters, providing context for understanding the reforms that are taking place under the auspices of European integration of Serbia and Kosovo in regard to gender equality and testing this new knowledge in practice through a workshop were in the focus of the seminar co-organised by prEUgovor on 14-16 June 2019 in Vrnjacka Banja.
Belgrade Centre for Security Policy (BCSP) Researcher Bojan Elek and Blerim Ahmeti facilitated a three-day long seminar on European Integrations. The seminar consisted of several lectures, and a practical workshop.
Tanja Ignjatovic from Autonomous Women Centre provided a short introduction into gender-related issues and identified shortcomings within the EU accession process of Serbia. In addition, she presented the state of play when it comes to combating discrimination in Serbia, as well as the most recent findings of the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW) and related UN and Council of Europe bodies.
Marija Andjelkovic from ASTRA - Anti-trafficking Action covered the aspects of the trafficking in human beings (THB) related reforms in Serbia. The lecture included police reform in Serbia with particular emphasis on the victim-centred approach, as well as the most recent developments in regards to protecting victims of THB, including providing shelter and victim compensation policy. The lecture helped participants better understand the factors that contribute to THB as an important aspect of fighting organised crime, as well as the key challenges in establishing effective mechanisms to counter it.
BCSP Researcher Bojan Elek presented the negotiating framework and key novelties within the EU’s new approach to enlargement, with particular focus on procedures, reporting mechanisms and how progress is monitored and evaluated. Specific attention was paid to the steps that Serbia has undertaken within the first 5 years since opening of the accession talks, focusing on lessons learned in this process that might be useful for the potential candidates.
Blerim Ahmeti held a session on EU enlargement perspective and challenges after European elections and Country Reports. The inception focus has been made on the perspective on the European Integration process of women present at the training session, following with the short explanation of the developments in in the EU integrations processes of Kosovo through the years. The latest country report has been discussed, pointing out the immediate need for Amendments to the Law on Women’s rights and raise of employment for the women in the years to come. New elections for the European Parliament and its effect in decision-making in regard of Western Balkan Countries has been analysed, especially focusing on the importance of 3rd decade of 21century which has been remarked as tentatively closing process of EU integration for the WB countries.
Finally, the participants were engaged in a short exercise where they were asked to share their experiences of monitoring and reporting to the EU bodies against the previously defined criteria. Particular attention was devoted to phraseology, timing and advocacy activities that follow up the reporting, so that it is possible to feed the findings into the EU reporting cycle and achieve policy impact. A total of 30 participants came from women’s organisations in the Rasina region and the North Mitrovica region.
Part of the seminar was co-financed by the EU supported project, titled prEUgovor Policy Watch: Monitoring Reforms in Chapters 23 and 24.
The seminar was organised within the framework of the project titled Belgrade-Pristina Negotiations from Women Perspective, supported by Kvina till Kvina Foundation.
Coalition prEUgovor is a network of civil society organizations established to monitor policies related to the negotiations on Serbia's accession to the European Union, with special emphasis on Chapters 23 and 24. The purpose of the prEUgovor is to help the EU accession process to be used to achieve substantial progress in the further democratization of Serbian society.
Members of the prEUgovor are: ASTRA - Anti trafficking Action, Autonomus Women's Center (AWC), Belgrade Centre for Security Policy (BCSP), Center for Applied European Studies (CAES),Center for Investigative Reporting in Serbia (CIRS), Group 484 and Transparency Serbia (TS).
The main product of prEUgovor is the semi-annual report on Serbia's progress in chapters 23 and 24, and the coalition is also published by rEUformator - a monthly newsletter dedicated to developments in Serbia and the EU in the areas covered by these two chapters.