news 26 Feb 13

Sannino Discusses Bosnia's EU Aims With Republika Srpska

On a two-day visit to Bosnia, the European Commission’s Director General for Enlargement, Stefano Sannino, met top officials of the Republika Srpska in Banja Luka.

Ratka Babic
Banja Luka

Sannino met with the President Milorad Dodik, the speaker of the National Assembly, Igor Radojicic, and the Prime Minister, Aleksandar Dzombic, to discuss Bosnia's European Union integration process and the stalled implementation of the “Sejdic-Finci” decision - a key 2009 European Court of Human Rights ruling.

The Strasbourg Court ruling told Bosnia to change its constitution to allow minorities to run for top posts now reserved for members of the three largest ethnic groups, Bosniaks [Muslims], Serbs and Croats.

Dodik said the Serb-led entity was willing to implement the “Sejdic-Finci” ruling, blaming delays on the “undefined” situation in the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Bosnia's other entity, which, according to him, made a resolution more difficult.

This meeting was attended by the head of the EU delegation in Bosnia, Peter Sorensen and the Bosnian Serb minister for economic relations and regional cooperation, Zeljka Cvijanovic.  

Radojicic and Sannino agreed that domestic reforms needed to be intensified so that the country could meet all the requirements for the organization of general elections in 2014.  

Radojicic also highlighted importance of the census planned for 2013. Republika Srpska Prime Minister Dzombic said after the meeting with Sannino that Bosniak political forces were attempting to obstruct the census, scheduled for October.

This would be the first census in Bosnia since the 1992-5 war. The last one was held in 1991 when Bosnia was part of Yugoslavia.

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