The Lawyers’ Committee for Human Rights (Yucom) said in a report released on Tuesday that Serbian citizens over the age of 65 were discriminated during the state of emergency imposed at the start of coronavirus pandemic.
People over the age of 65 were banned from leaving their homes at the start of the state of emergency declared on March 15 but were later allowed out first in the early morning hours on weekends to shop and later for hour-long walks during the overnight curfew.
Limiting the right to movement during the state of emergency was imposed on all citizens of Serbia but not equally and the question of discrimination against people over the age of 65 can rightly be raised, the report said and added that the Constitutional Court failed to do anything.
“Unlike constitutional courts in the region and throughout Europe that evaluated constitutionality of similar measures, the constitutional court of Serbia remained passive throughout the entire state of emergency, allowing for the continued legal uncertainty and violation of the rights of the citizens. Precisely that legal uncertainty, caused by frequent changes of the regulations, led to extremely high number of cases where the citizens were charged with the criminal offense of failure to act Pursuant to health Regulations during epidemic,” the report said.
It said that some 950 criminal cases were tried for violation of quarantine orders and recalled that in some cases people entering the country were given only verbal instructions to self-isolate and were not informed of their rights.