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On 28 October 2019, the IRZ and the Bar Association of the Republic of Srpska organised a joint seminar on “Preventing money laundering – the application of legal regulations governing the practice of lawyers in the Republic of Srpska and their duties with regard to preventing money laundering in Germany”. The seminar was the first joint event held by the IRZ and the Bar Association of the smaller of the two entities of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The President of the Bar Association of the Republic of Srpska, Branislav Rakić, and Rita Linderoth, Senior Project Manager at the IRZ, opened the seminar. The opening presentation was given by Borislav Čvoro, an investigator at the investigation authority for combating organised crime, SIPA (State Investigation and Protection Agency). He spoke about the relevant legal provisions in Bosnia and Herzegovina and about the resulting duties of lawyers. Afterwards, Harriet Krüger, a lawyer based in Cologne specialising in criminal law, presented the situation in Germany with the help of numerous practical cases. The German legal provisions are similar to those in the Republic of Srpska but there has not yet been any practical application in the Republic of Srpska and so Harriet Krüger’s lecture also covered the application of the law.
The lectures were followed by intense discussions. The participants talked above all about the difficulties for lawyers in maintaining a balance between confidentiality and their duty to report any issues with regards to the prevention of money laundering.
From 16 to 18 October 2019, a regional conference on “Religious freedom in constitutional court practices” was held in Teslić in the Republika Srpska, one of the two entities of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The event was supported by the German Foreign Office and organised by the Constitutional Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina along with the IRZ.
The participants came from six constitutional courts in South-East European countries: as well as judges and employees of the constitutional court in the host country, presidents and judges from the constitutional courts of Croatia, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Slovenia and Serbia also took part in the event.
The event was divided into several panels, which were moderated by the Vice-Presidents of the Constitutional Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Mato Tadić and Mirsad Čeman, and by the responsible head of section of the IRZ, Dr. Stefan Pürner.
The following speakers presented the case law of their own courts:
Zlatko M. Knežević, President of the Constitutional Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina,
Dr. Rajko Knez, President of the Constitutional Court of Slovenia,
Vesna Ilić Prelić, President of the Constitutional Court of Serbia,
Hamdija Šarkinović, a judge at the Constitutional Court of Montenegro,
Dr. sc. Mato Arlović, a judge at the Constitutional Court of Croatia, and
Dr. Darko Kostadinovski, a judge at the Constitutional Court of North Macedonia.
Prof. Dr. Udo Steiner, a former judge at the German Federal Constitutional Court, was present as IRZ expert to introduce the case law of the German Federal Constitutional Court governing questions of religious freedom.
As is the norm at this kind of regional conference, the lectures provided the starting point for extensive discussions, which were made easier due to the fact that the majority of the lectures, as well as summaries of the cited court decisions of the European Court of Human Rights and the German Federal Constitutional Court, were available in writing.
The sustainability of the event is ensured by a conference transcript bringing together all the materials discussed at the conference and published jointly by the Constitutional Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the IRZ.
A report from the President of the Constitutional Court of Slovenia was included in the programme at short notice. A few days before the conference, the Constitutional Court of Slovenia had overturned parts of Slovenian asylum law, in which the individual assessment of refugees could be restricted. This decision and its reasoning are also of interest to the participants from other states, since they are all situated on actual or potential “Balkan routes”.
The seventh “Family Law” day was held in Mostar on 26 and 27 September 2019. This year's theme for the international conference organised jointly by the IRZ and the Faculty of Law at the Džemal Bijedić University was “Human rights as the driving force behind the development of family law”. The event was aimed at lawyers from both universities in Mostar and at family law practitioners.
The following lectures were given at the conference:
Prof. Dr.Zoran Ponjavić (Kragujevac, Serbia): Family law, from institutions to contracts
Prof. Dr. Sc. Suzana Kraljić (Maribor, Slovenia): Age discrimination and family law: Examples from the areas of marriage, adoption and child custody in Slovenia
Dr. Sc. Mirjana Nadaždin (Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina): The prevention of violence against women and in the family – the relationship between normative and social reality
Prof. Dr. Anita Duraković (Mostar, Bosnia and Herzegovina): The influence of human rights on international family law
Prof. Dr. Larisa Velić/ lecturer Dr. Enis Omerović (Zenica, Bosnia and Herzegovina): The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child and its protocols, in particular with regards to the legal protection of the child’s assets and interests: Complete and effective protection of the child or incomplete and ineffective obligations of the contracting parties?
Prof. Dr. Darko Radić (Banja Luka, Bosnia and Herzegovina): Improving the legal capacities of the child – a child’s right to freedom of speech and the capacity of a child to make legal decisions
Lecturer Dr. Slađana Aras Krama (Zagreb, Croatia): Some of the procedural aspects involved in granting parental responsibility for child custody to people with disabilities in Croatian law
Prof. Dr. Dušica Palačković (Kragujevac, Serbia): The determination of marriage, non-marriage and paternity and the rights of children to find out about their parents; the protection of children’s rights in civil law in court proceedings in the Republic of Serbia (is our legal system suitable for children?)
Prof. Dr. Nenad Hlača (Rijeka, Croatia): “Living apart together”
Lecturer Dr. Ajdin Huseinspahić (Zenica, Bosnia and Herzegovina): Protecting the personal rights of the child in Bosnian-Herzegovinian law as a prerequisite for family protection
Dipl. Iur. Katja Drnovšek/ Dipl. Iur. Katja Markač Hrovatin (Maribor, Slovenia): From parental rights to parental responsibility: Developments in Slovenian family law
The lectures were met with great interest and discussed in detail by the participants. The welcome speech by the Minister for Education and Science for the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Prof. Dr. Elvira Dilberović, at the start of the conference and reports in the media (Mostar: Znanstveni skup o obiteljskom pravu) underline the importance of this event, which has now become a tradition.