Serbia: Amnesty International submission for the EU Enlargement Package / Opinion 2024

Amnesty International is presenting this submission to the European Commission ahead of the preparation of its 2024 Enlargement Package, including the Opinion on the application for Serbia’s membership in the European Union. It details Amnesty International’s human rights concerns and outlines key recommendations that the EU should prioritize in the framework of Serbia’s EU accession process as well as any other ongoing engagement with the authorities. 

The past year has seen mounting tensions in the region as the Serbian authorities continued to balance their commitment to EU membership with long-standing political and economic ties with Russia. Yet, in an era of increasing geopolitical upheaval, it is crucial that adherence to human rights and the rule of law becomes more, not less central to the EU’s relations with its partners and prospective members of the Union.

The EU and its member states should therefore ensure that their engagement with the Serbian authorities as well as the technical and financial support foreseen within the framework of Serbia’s EU accession process is used to foster genuine human rights reforms and their effective implementation.

This briefing covers the following key issues which the EU should address in the framework of Serbia’s EU accession process and other ongoing engagement with the authorities:

  1. Freedom of expression
  2. Freedom of assembly
  3. Economic, social and cultural rights: Social Card Law        
  4. Unlawful use of invasive Spyware to target critical voices