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International Information Centre for Balkan Studies



EU: Blocking BiH institutions over genocide denial ban is ‘unacceptable’

July 29, 2021

European Union officials have warned that blocking the institutions of Bosnia and Herzegovina, which representatives of Bosnia's Serb-dominated entity Republika Srpska announced after the law banning the genocide denial came into force, is unacceptable.

According to Radio Free Europe, the official Brussels emphasised the need for the full functioning of institutions as crucial for the country's path towards the EU membership.

“EU calls on political representatives to refrain from non-constructive statements and actions that might affect the functioning of political and judicial institutions in whole Bosnia and Herzegovina. Threatening with boycott or blockade is unacceptable,” an EU spokesperson told Radio Free Europe.

The same official, who was not named, said that the EU authorities are fully cooperating with the Office of the High Representative in Bosnia and Herzegovina, who imposed these law changes, and that this institution will hopefully continue to work towards its closer once the conditions for that are met.

This week the officials from Bosnia's Republika Srpska entity announced they would not participate in the work of BiH institutions, dissatisfied with the law amendments the High Representative Valentin Inzko imposed only days before he hands over the duty to German diplomat Christian Schmidt.

Milorad Dodik, the Serb member of Bosnia's tripartite Presidency, said the international envoy's decision to impose the genocide denial ban means “the last nail in Bosnia and Herzegovina's coffin” and that the Serbs must never accept this decision.

The Office of the High Representative, the institution overseeing the implementation of the civilian part of the Dayton Peace Agreement, the deal which ended the 1992-95 Bosnian war, was established in 1995, and for this institution to close down Bosnia needs a positive assessment of the situation in the country by the Peace Implementation Council – an international body whose Steering Board provides the High Representative with political guidance.

The High Representative is also assigned with special powers to impose laws and dismiss local officials in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

Source:  https://ba.n1info.com/english/news/eu-blocking-bih-institutions-over-genocide-denial-ban-is-unacceptable/

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