In-between freedom and restrictions: legal framework of freedom of assembly in BiH

This report points out that numerous legal provisions regulating freedom of peaceful assembly in BiH are not in accordance with international standards and examples of good practice in this area, and it offers concrete recommendations for their improvement.

Themes: Human RightsAdvocacy
Amila Kurtović
Editor

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Freedom of peaceful assembly is an indispensable element of democratic societies. As such, it is guaranteed in numerous international and regional documents, signed by BiH as well. This freedom is particularly important having in mind its contribution to creating and sustaining an engaged and informed citizenry, enabled to express its opinions and complaints, as well as publicly demand that the authorities rectify the issues they are responsible for.  

In BiH, this fundamental right is currently being regulated by eleven laws on public assemblies, which significantly differ in terms of their quality and level of compliance with international standards. That results in different possibilites of exercising the right to freedom of peaceful assembly in different parts of BiH. However, in general, it can be concluded that current legal provisions in BiH render freedom of assembly ceremonial and theoretical, rather than a practical and achievable guarantee and right in a democratic society. 

New report by Analitika provides an overview of key shortcomings of the legal provisions concerning freedom of assembly in BiH, from the perspective of international standards, examples of good practice from other countries, and offers concrete recommendations for improvements in this area. 

The report  is available HERE.

The realization of this project is supported by the OSCE Mission to BiH. Any view, statement, or opinion expressed in this project, which is not specifically attributed to the OSCE Mission to BiH, does not necessarily reflect the official policy of the OSCE Mission to BiH.