CoE in Serbia: Everyone has right to choose nationality

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Tobijas Flesenkemper
Source: N1

The head of the Council of Europe (CoE) office in Belgrade, Tobias Flessenkemper, said Monday it was crucial for Serbia that everyone had the right to choose their nationality, "whether it is one, none or multiple".

„It is an important human right to decide for yourself whether and how you will identify yourself in terms of national or other identities. Supporting Serbia in making multiple diversity management reality is one of the tasks of the CoE,“ Flessenkemper told the Autonomy portal.

According to him, the knowledge, collection and accuracy of data on the position of members of national minorities must be especially improved.

„That requires comprehensive and participatory preparation of the census in October 2022, as well as the inclusion of the right of persons belonging to minorities to multiple national affiliations,“ Flessenkemper said.

He added that hate speech towards representatives of national minorities should also be addressed.

Flessenkemper recalled that the latest recommendation of the CoE Committee of Ministers made a priority to raise awareness about members of the Roma minority living in informal settlements.

„It is also necessary to redouble efforts to combat absenteeism and early school leaving, to expand and develop the long-term use of pedagogical assistants, and to step up efforts to improve Roma participation in economic and social life,“ Flessenkemper said.