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news 28 Feb 14

Serb Speaker Blocks Bosnia Independence Day Event

As Bosnian Serbs do not recognize March 1 - Bosnian Independence Day - as a holiday, the speaker has denied use of the halls of parliament for events related to the occasion.

BIRN
Sarajevo

Milorad Zivkovic, speaker of the House of Representatives of the Bosnian Parliament, said he would not allow any events to be held on March 1 in two largest parliamentary halls, the Great hall and the White hall.

This is because Serbs in Bosnia do not recognize March 1, Bosnian independence day, either as a holiday or as a day worth celebrating.

On March 1, 1992, a majority of Bosnians voted in a referendum to separate from the former Yugoslavia. Most Serbs strongly opposed the move, however.

The Forum of Parliamentarians 1990, comprised of former lawmakers, wanted to use the halls to review the events related to Bosnia's path to independence.

Zivkovic is a member of the Alliance of Independent Social Democrats, SNSD, the ruling party in Bosnia's mainly Serbian entity, Republika Srpska.

Independence Day is marked as a state holiday in Bosnia's other entity, the mainly Bosniak and Croat Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

In Republika Srpska, however, the day is recalled only as the start the civil war that took place from 1992 to 1995.

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