Human rights

The Government of the Republic of Macedonia will promote, protect and enhance the respect of human rights in the Republic of Macedonia and provide the institutional capacities for efficient protection and sanctioning of all attempting to violate them. We will put emphasis on reinstating trust in authorities and their obligation to protect human rights and freedoms. One of the most urgent priorities on the Government agenda will be to bring back freedom to the Republic of Macedonia and build a society of free, equal, safe and dignified citizens!

In view of implementing European human rights standards and guaranteeing human rights protection, the Government of the Republic of Macedonia will:
-    propose legislative changes so people subjected to human rights violations receive real and not – like until now – symbolic compensation for the violation. This will be the basis for personal responsibility of judges and prosecutors, who had participated in violations of the law.
-    open debates on constitutional changes and seek support for constitutional limit of the duration of detention as well as for strengthening legal basis and mechanisms for control of the merits of deprivation from freedom and the use of various detention measures.
-    propose new legal framework which will include European standards for protection of presumption of innocence and penalties in accordance with European standards in case of violation of this right. 
-    propose legal amendments for reform of the Commission for Protection from discrimination, which will become independent, expert body with increased competences, composed of people, who are truly dedicated to human rights protection.
-    solicit wider support for amendment of the Law on Communications Surveillance, so motions for oversight of communications are not raised by any given police officer; decrease the period of duration in which time of secrecy of communications is imposed. Limiting the right to secrecy of communications must be strictly controlled and imposed only when necessary for collecting data for the purposes of oversight. 
-    propose amendments to the Police Act in order to precisely delineate the methods for operating control, the maximum period of monitoring people and introduction of other guarantees to limit arbitrary police behavior. 
-    suggest changes to the Law on civil responsibility for libel and defamation and lower the damage fees issued in cases of libel or defamation in the Republic of Macedonia. 
-    improve conditions in penal - correctional facilities in order to prevent torture, inhuman and degrading treatment. We will introduce complete control over police authorities in these facilities in order to remove cases of improper treatment and excessive use of force by police officers in these institutions.

We will also introduce systematic training of prison officials as well as procedures for detailed review of all complaints citing cases of violence and use of excessive. In this light, we will strengthen the role of the Ombudsman as a preventive mechanism for protection of torture, inhuman and degrading treatment. Additionally we will improve the conditions in penal – correctional institutions, especially those connected to health care protection and dignified treatment.

-    table amendments to the Law on Referenda and other forms of direct expression of the will of citizens. The change will set precise terms for all actions carried out by state authorities with jurisdiction over this citizen right as well as upgrade certain provisions that caused problems in practice and were abused by the Government to disable and discourage citizens from using direct democracy mechanisms.
-    propose amendments to laws guaranteeing freedom of assembly and defining clear and precise police authority.
The Government of the Republic of Macedonia will promote gender equality policies and work on women empowerment and participation in all spheres of political, economic and public life. In this light, we will set up a separate government body for gender equality responsible for gender mainstreaming in both policy- and budget-making.

The Government will insist on education, media and cultural reforms that will overcome existing gender stereotypes and stimulate greater opportunities for girls and women in the country.

The Government will push for ratification of the Council of Europe convention on preventing and combating violence against women and domestic violence of 2011 (Istanbul Convention) and, accordingly, establish a network of standardized institutions guaranteeing the minimum package of services for protection of domestic violence victims. We will also propose a new Law on gender-based violence and amendments to the Criminal Code by introducing provisions for all forms of gender based violence. 

The Government will introduce programs for assistance and empowerment of women entrepreneurs, especially those residing in rural areas.