11/05, 29/05, 3-5/06/ 2020
By letter of 13 February 2020 then Prime Minister Kurti of the Republic of Kosovo requested an opinion of the Venice Commission on the draft amendments to the Criminal Procedure Code (CPC). In particular, the request is to assess whether the proposed amendments concerning trial in absentia (Article 306) and suspension of officials from office (Article 177) are compatible with the provisions of the Constitution and the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR). Its adoption is foreseen for the upcoming plenary session to take part from 18 to 19 June in written procedure.
As part of preparation of the opinion, a delegation of the Venice Commission held video-conferences on 11 May 2020 with the Kosovo Bar Association and with civil society organisations including academics, followed by a virtual meeting with members of the international community on 29 May 2020.
Further video-conferences took place from 3rd to 5th June 2020 with the Speaker of the Assembly, as well as with members of the judiciary and the prosecution. Regrettably, virtual meetings arranged for with the Acting Prime Ministers’ Office, the then Minister of Justice and the then Minister of European Affairs, as well as with majority and opposition in Parliament could not be held due to the change of government on 3 June 2020.
The preparation of this draft opinion is financed through the framework of the "Horizontal Facility for the Western Balkans and Turkey II", a joint programme funded by the European Union and the Council of Europe, and implemented by the Council of Europe.