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5th Central European Regional Forum in Valbandon, Croatia

CroatiaFrom 6 to 8 May 2009, police oversight bodies from 11 countries and institutions of the region met in Valbandon, Croatia, for the 5th Central European Regional Forum of the Internal Protection Services.

The topic of this year’s forum was "The importance of complaints in the protection of human rights and suppression of corruption”. Presentations of various institutions highlighted the priority that the countries involved – Austria, Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Croatia, Hungary, Kosovo, Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Slovakia, and Slovenia - and their institutions are giving to a constant, swift and open dialogue with the society.

As stated in several international legal instruments, especially the accessibility of those organizations tasked with the prevention of and the fight against the abuse of public office lies at the core of effectively defending the rule of law, equality before the law and the human rights.  There was a common understanding that complaints - in good faith - should be treated as a way to enhance the capabilities of police and other public sector organizations. Therefore, it was seen as important to collect complaints in an ever more diligent and structured manner in order to find out patterns which can be used to improve the system - not only to the advantage of society, but also for the enhancement of the working environment of all policemen and public officials.

Finally, the basic findings and aims of this successful conference as well as future perspectives were summed up in a declaration. The 6th Central European Regional Forum will be held in Austria in 2010.

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