Bosnian-Croatian-Serbian translation of the German insurance contract

The IRZ has been supporting the knowledge of German law in Southeast Europe for a long time with a series of translations of German law publications with commentaries, monographs and text books which are of interest in these states as well. Translations which have been published in this context so far include the German Code of Criminal Procedure, the German "Guidelines for Criminal Proceedings and Proceedings Concerning Regulatory Offences (RiStBV)" and the 10th book of the German Code of Civil Procedure. But also provisions of the German Federal states such as the Bavarian legal training and examination regulations or the implementing regulations on the official appraisal of judges of the Federal State of North-Rhine Westphalia have already been published. Other publications include text books on European law, a volume with lectures on administrative law and administrative jurisdiction as well as a monograph by the former President of the Federal Constitutional Court, Prof Dr Jutta Limbach.

A Bosnian-Croatian-Serbian translation of the German insurance contract law has now been issued within these activities. Hence, the text of this German law, which is relevant also in economic terms, is now also available in a language which is spoken by most lawyers in the successor states of former Yugoslavia.

A detailed introduction which also refers to the law of the region provides for an easier understanding of the German law text by the readers of the region. It was written by Dr Slavko Djordjevic, a German-speaking professor at the law faculty of Kragujevac, Serbia, and Dr Darko Samardzic, a German lawyer with a Serbian background. The former president of the Serbian Insurance Law Association, Prof Dr Jovan Slavnic, made a contribution in which he submits some suggestions for the future regulation of the insurance contract in the Serbian law based on the German law.

The publication starts with prefaces by the General Manager of the German Insurance Association GDV , Dr Jörg Freiherr Frank von Fürstenwerth, and the acting President of the Serbian Insurance Law Association, Prof Dr Slobodan Jovanovic.

The publication is part of the IRZ's long-standing cooperation with the above-mentioned Serbian Association in the field of insurance law which the GDV regularly supports with its contributors.

Regional Conference of Southeast European Constitutional Courts on the ECHR in Zlatibor

Group photo

From 19 to 21 June 2014, a regional conference took place in Zlatibor in Serbia, which was jointly organised by the Serbian Constitutional Court and the IRZ. The event was entitled "The Protection of the Right to Freedom and Security and the Ban on Torture". Apart from the judges of the hosting Serbian Constitutional Court and its President Vesna Ilic Prelic, the conference delegates included the Presidents of the Constitutional Courts of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Valerija Galic, of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Dr Katja Senjak, of the Macedonian Constitutional Court, Elena Goseva, and of the Montenegrin Constitutional Court, Desanka Lopicic. Further delegates comprised judges of the above-mentioned courts and academic staff members of the Serbian Constitutional Court. The conference focused on an intensive exchange about the individual case laws of the delegates' countries. In addition, the former judge at the German Federal Constitutional Court, Dr Dieter Hömig, and the present Macedonian judge at the ECHR, Dr Lazarova Trajkovska, gave introductions into the relevant case law of their own courts.

The discussion focused on the violation of human rights by illegal orders of pretrial detention. It was unanimously criticised by the attending constitutional court judges from Southeast Europe that in many states of the region pretrial detention is ordered too fast and although no mandatory legal requirements exist and that it is substantiated in a very formulaic way. The delegates also expressed their concern about the danger of relativizing the absolute ban on torture as a consequence of voices in American literature which consider preventive torture, for instance in the fight against international terrorism, as admissible. It was pointed out with regard to the relationship to the ECHR that the Constitutional Courts of the region are aware of its decisions and also quote them in their judgements. However, this is not enough for an effective protection of the citizens' rights in this state as such legal protection is not only dependent on the Constitutional Court. Therefore it is important for the ordinary jurisdiction to follow the decisions of the national constitutional courts and the ECHR, and as the President of the Serbian Constitutional Court, Ms Vesna Ilic Prelic put it in her conclusion, it is important "for the ordinary courts to start thinking like constitutional courts".

IRZ participates in the first Serbian-German Civil Dialogue

Ambassador Heinz Wilhelm giving his welcome address

Ambassador Heinz Wilhelm giving his welcome address

The first "Serbian-German Civil Dialogue" took place in the Serbian Parliament in Belgrade on 30 and 31 January 2014, organised by the European Movement Germany and the European Movement Serbia. It was attended by more than 100 high-ranking German and Serbian representatives from politics, industry, media and society. Amongst others, the German Ambassador in Belgrade, Mr Heinz Wilhelm, gave a welcome address at the event. Furthermore, two practical examples of a long-standing, successful cooperation between German and Serbian organisations were presented. The first example dealt with the work of the Deutsche Gesellschaft für internationale Zusammenarbeit GIZ, and the second one covered activities which the IRZ has been carrying out in the legal area since 2000 as part of the German commitment in the Stability Pact for South East Europe. The second presentation was given by the responsible Head of Section, Dr. Stefan Pürner, in Serbian. His review focused on the deliberately provocative statement that "In law, just like in geography, Serbia's direct route to Europe does not lead via America". Furthermore, many examples from the IRZ's successful work in Serbia were given. A detailed report about the event is available on the website of the European Movement Germany.