Serbia's striking lawyers rally as nearly 3 months of boycott blocked courts

Serbia's striking lawyers are asking for European Union help to resolve a three-month old dispute with the government that has practically paralyzed the judiciary in the Balkan country seeking to join the bloc.

Hundreds of lawyers rallied Thursday outside the government headquarters vowing to persist in their demands for lower taxes and changes to the newly-established notary service.

Serbia's Bar Association went on strike over those demands in mid-September, putting on hold thousands of cases in the already overburdened court system. The strike prompted inmates in pre-trial detention to complain they were spending more time behind bars than necessary.

The head of the Bar Association, Dragoljub Djordjevich, said he is traveling to Brussels Thursday after several failed attempts at a compromise with the government.