Montenegro Government and Politics

State and politics

Montenegro Country Flag

Reference: Montenegro Flag Meaning

During the crisis that preceded Yugoslavia’s dissolution, Montenegro allied with Serbia. In April 1992, these states formed the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. In June 1992, Montenegro, like Serbia, became subject to UN sanctions. According to, cooperation between the two remaining Yugoslav republics was not without problems, and in Montenegro a discussion on independence began to take off. In August 1999, the Government of Montenegro presented a proposal for redefining Serbia-Montenegro relations in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia into a looser state federation. Following pressure from, among others, the EU, Montenegro agreed to form, together with Serbia, the Serbia and Montenegro state union in 2003. In a referendum on May 21, 2006, the people of Montenegro voted for an exit from the Union, which was implemented on June 3 of the same year. Independence was quickly recognized by the outside world, while Montenegro sought (and gained) membership in international organizations; Serbia had to take over the old joint international membership. Also see AbbreviationFinder for abbreviation of MW and its meanings of Montenegro.

A new constitution was adopted in the autumn of 2007 according to which the executive power belongs to the president, who is elected in general elections for a maximum of two five-year terms. In the 2013 presidential election, Filip Vujanović from DPS (see below) was re-elected president. A single-chamber parliament (skupština), with 81 members elected in general elections of four years, has the legislative power. In the October 2012 parliamentary elections, a coalition led by Montenegro’s largest party DPS (Montenegro’s Democratic Socialist Party) received nearly 46 percent of the vote, and DPS leader Milo Đukanovićcould again become prime minister. Đukanović has dominated politics in the country since the beginning of the 1990s, first as president, then as prime minister on several occasions, and was one of the main advocates of independence. The DPS has its roots in the old Communist Party, as well as the largest party in the divided opposition, the SNP (Montenegro Socialist People’s Party), which was for a continued union with Serbia and in 1998 broke out of the DPS. Locally, Montenegro is divided into 21 municipalities (opština).

History and Politics

Montenegro under the Romans and Byzantines

In ancient times the Illyrian, Dacian and Thracian tribes settled in the Balkans and thus also in the area that is now known as Montenegro. From the 3rd century BC They were ousted by the Romans, who conquered the area. When the Roman Empire was divided into West and East Stream towards the end of the 4th century, Montenegro belonged to the East Roman and Byzantine Empire.

A separate church developed in the Byzantine Empire, which is still very widespread in the earlier areas of this empire: the Orthodox Church. In the 6th and 7th centuries, Slavic tribes immigrated to the Byzantine Empire and adapted to the prevailing culture there. They were the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes.

Black Ivan and rapprochement with Russia

In the fight against the Ottomans in the 15th century, a ruler from the Crnojević dynasty became a hero: Ivan Crnojević, who is also called the Black Ivan by the Montenegrins. In addition to the defense of the Montenegrin area against the Ottomans, he also brought technologies such as the typewriter into the country from his travels, which contributed to the technical progress of the area.

He also strengthened the church in the country, so that various bishops ruled over Montenegro after him. At this time, Montenegro was getting closer and closer to Russia. Because Russia, like Montenegro, fought against the Ottomans. So Montenegro was recognized by Russia as a separate state for the first time. Montenegro also fought on the side of Russia in the Napoleonic Wars.

King Nikola I.

In 1852 Montenegro became a principality. In 1860 Nikola I became the new prince. From 1875 to 1878 the principality finally liberated itself from the rule of the Ottomans in a war. With the victory a peaceful time began, which the prince used to modernize the country. Outwardly, he brought the country recognition, but also suppressed domestic attempts at democratization. In 1910 he made the principality a kingdom. When the First World War ended, King Nikolas reign ended and he fled the country.

The first Yugoslav state

In Austria-Hungary occupied Bosnia and Herzegovina, the neighboring country of Montenegro, the assassination attempt in Sarajevo in 1914 triggered the First World War. With the subsequent declaration of war by the Habsburgs on the Serbs, the basis for the establishment of the first Yugoslav state was laid. In 1918, Croats and Slovenes, who had previously been subject to the Habsburgs, allied themselves with Serbia and founded the Yugoslav Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes.

Montenegro was one of them, even if it didn’t appear in the name. Despite internal disputes, a separate constitution was passed in 1921. The different ethnic groups of the state argued again and again and had very different goals and interests. In order to maintain control, the royal dictatorship was declared in the Yugoslav Kingdom. Thereafter, the country was renamed the Kingdom of Yugoslavia in 1929.

Yugoslavia and National Socialism

A friendship pact between the King of Yugoslavia and Hitler sparked numerous protests in the country. In 1941 there was a military coup and the king was deposed. The new government sought proximity to Russia and England, that is, Hitler’s opponents. Therefore Hitler ordered the attack on Yugoslavia and bombed the country. In addition, National Socialist troops marched into Yugoslavia and the militarily defeated country was forced to surrender in 1941.

From then on, the Yugoslav population was oppressed and mistreated by Hitler’s troops and his allies. The communist party called on independent armed fighters (partisans) to resist. An uprising was organized on July 13, 1941. This date is still a national holiday today. There followed numerous long bloody battles.

The second Yugoslavia

In Yugoslavia, even before the end of the Second World War, there was an agreement that the decision on the future of Yugoslavia should be made in a constituent national assembly. The communist forces in Yugoslavia, which had strengthened during the fighting, received a large majority. However, there were almost no alternatives to the Communist Party of Yugoslavia (CPJ).

On November 29, 1945, the monarchy was officially declared over and the Federal People’s Republic of Yugoslavia was proclaimed, which was soon recognized by the Western powers. This consisted of the republics of Serbia, Croatia, Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Montenegro. Because there had been controversy between the various ethnic groups before, the leader of the former partisans and subsequent Prime Minister of Yugoslavia , Josip Broz Tito, decided that the individual states could have their own administration restricted, provided that this did not contradict the constitution of the entire Yugoslavia.

Trouble with the Soviet Union

In Yugoslavia the long-fought independence had finally been achieved, even without the support of the Soviet Union. That is why they did not want to join the Eastern Bloc countries, but rather remain independent. The Soviet dictator Stalin and the Yugoslav Prime Minister Tito quarreled about it and grew further and further apart.

Stalin excluded Yugoslavia from his plans for the worldwide spread of communism and ended all economic relations between the Eastern bloc states and Yugoslavia. As a result, Yugoslavia came closer and closer to the West and NATO. Only the Russian President Khrushchev managed to bring the two states closer together again.

Yugoslavia is beginning to crumble

The cohesion in Yugoslavia was based for a long time on Tito’s policy, which enabled the republics to be independent and at the same time united Yugoslavia. After his death and the collapse of the Eastern bloc states, which were a united opponent, the Republic of Yugoslavia also crumbled.

Within the republics, national groups were gaining popularity and blaming the other republics for the problems in the country. Violent clashes broke out. In 1990 there were democratic elections in Montenegro and the elected communist ruler campaigned for the annexation of Montenegro to Serbia, which was achieved in a referendum in 1992. The two states now called themselves “Federal Republic of Yugoslavia”.

Serbia and Montenegro

Some people in Montenegro still wanted their own state without being dependent on Serbia. There were always arguments and arguments in the country. All attempts to establish a democratic Montenegro were blocked by the Serbian side, but supported by the West. In addition, Montenegro largely stayed out of the war in Kosovo and announced the separation from Yugoslavia if an agreement could not be reached.

In a referendum, however, no majority could be won for the proposal and, with the support of the EU, the state “Serbia and Montenegro” was formed in 2003. Although the republics were both parts of a common state, each had its own policy within the state.

Montenegro becomes a sovereign state

The referendum on the complete independence of Montenegro, which was again carried out by Prime Minister Milo Dukanovic, received a sufficient majority in 2006. The country’s independence was proclaimed on June 3rd. Since then, Montenegro has been seeking closer proximity to the EU and is an official candidate for membership.

Montenegro Head of Government

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