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Comment 19 Sep 17

Managing the Last Days of Milorad Dodik

The regime in the Bosnian Serb entity is fast imploding – but whether anyone in the West has the will to mediate this process remains unclear.

Jasmin Mujanovic
BIRN
Milorad Dodik, president of Republika Srpska. Photo: Anadolou

Readers who have followed my columns for Balkan Insight over the past year will have noted three broad and interrelated themes: the crisis of parliamentary democracy in the Western Balkans; the turn towards overt authoritarianism and illiberalism among ruling elites in the region; and the need for mass civil society mobilization to reverse these trends.

Macedonia’s recent change of government should feature prominently in our collective political imaginations because it demonstrates just what kinds of breakthroughs are possible, even against the most reactionary and volatile regimes, through popular agitation.

On the other hand, and as explained previously, there is Bosnia and Herzegovina and, in particular, the government of Milorad Dodik in the Republika Srpska, RS.

With the fall of Nikola Gruevski in Skopje there is no more dangerous figure to the overall stability of the Western Balkans than Dodik. And though his days are numbered, his desperation, like Gruevski’s, should concern both local and European policymakers.

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