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Montenegrin Parliamentary Commission Approves Request To Lift Immunity Of Opposition Leaders

Montenegrin opposition deputies Andrija Mandic (left) and Milan Knezevic (composite file photo)

A parliamentary commission in Montenegro has approved a request by the special prosecutor to lift the immunity of two senior opposition leaders allegedly involved in a pro-Russian plot to overthrow the government.

Prosecutor Milivoje Katnic has made the motion so that Andrija Mandic and Milan Knezevic can be detained and eventually put on trial.

Katnic has claimed that both leaders of the pro-Kremlin Democratic Front, which oppose NATO membership, are suspected of "establishing a criminal organization" and being involved in attempts against "the constitutional rule and security of Montenegro."

The motion to strip the immunity of the two opposition leaders will be decided in a parliamentary vote, which is expected to be held on February 15.

Mandic and Knezevic have dismissed the plot allegations as "fiction."

Montenegro has arrested around 20 people in connection with the alleged plot in October, most of them Serbian nationals.

Russia has denied involvement, but has actively supported local groups that oppose Montenegro becoming a NATO member.

With reporting by AP