Dusko Markovic, the Minister of Justice, has announced that the Montenegrin criminal code has been modified to ensure that journalists will no longer fear criminal charges arising over libel allegations.
In the past, journalists and their employers could be charged in criminal court for alleged libel or defamation. This led to a chilling effect on free speech in the nation.
The impetus for this change was meeting European Commission recommendations necessary for entry into the European Union, but every Montenegrin will benefit from this improvement to the civil rights of Montenegrin citizens and residents.
Further work is needed to ensure that Montenegrin freedom of speech is protected, both for professional journalists and ordinary citizens, but this change is an important step forward into a new world.