Although the Ombudswoman Lora Vidović has repeatedly warned on migrants’ complaints on police violence, she has not yet received the answer from neither the Ministry of Interior nor from the Chief State Attorney’s Office (DORH) about undertaken efficient investigations which should confirm or deny the allegations. This was reported to the Parliamentary Committee on Human and National Minority Rights at the thematic session held on 18th October 2018.

Thus it is still not known why parts of thermal cameras video are missing, one of the examples being a part shot at the exact time of the alleged incident reported to Ombudswoman, even though the video just before and just after it is recorded. The police claimed the electricity went out exactly at the time of the alleged incident, but the Ministry of Interior has not answered the question as to whether they have informed and whom, on the power supply failure. Also, since all events are noted in the registry of the thermal and camera system, in case the video was erased, there should be a log containing the name of the person that erased the video, and probably an official memo on who has ordered it.

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Office of the Ombudswoman regularly receives queries from domestic and foreign media about the police treatment of migrants, namely, the allegations on violence and problems with access to the international protection. We can confirm that the Ombudswoman has opened several cases and the investigative procedures are ongoing, based on complaints filed by migrants, NGOs and international organisations, and opened on own initiative. The procedure of establishing the truthfulness of those claims includes communication with complainants, Ministry of Interior as well as unannounced field visits, especially to police stations.

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New instructions sent to penal institutions should contribute to the greater safety of the vulnerable groups deprived of liberty and respect of their fundamental human rights during the confinement. The instructions, prepared by the Ministry of Justice, are based on the Ombudswoman Lora Vidović's recommendation, issued after the case of harassment of a person with intellectual disorder, reported by the media.

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