BiH: Komšić calls on RS to change the planned motorway route

BiH: Komšić calls on RS to change the planned motorway route

The Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina Chairman, Željko Komšić, urges the Republika Srpska authorities to respect the Dayton Peace Agreement or Annex 7 of the Dayton Peace Agreement, since the planned route of the Banja Luka-Prijedor motorway envisages the demolition of a large number of returnees houses and destruction of property. The returnees and property owners disagree with the demolition and insist on changing the motorway route, the Cabinet of the Chairman of the BiH Presidency says in a statement.

“The planned route of the Banja Luka-Prijedor motorway, in the part of the Kozarac returnee settlement, divides this settlement into two parts, foresees the demolition of a large number of returnee houses and the confiscation of the agricultural land of the returnees, but also of those who have not yet returned. In this way, the right of those expelled, refugees and displaced persons to return to their pre-war homes in Kozarac, as is stipulated in Annex 7 of the Dayton Peace Agreement, is put in jeopardy”, Komšić stresses.

Annex 7 of the Dayton Peace Agreement guarantees that “all refugees and displaced persons have the right to return to their homes freely”, and that “the competent parties will take all necessary measures to prevent in their territories activities that would interfere with or prevent the safe and voluntary return of refugees and displaced persons”, and that they “will enable everyone to return from exile to their homes as quickly as possible”.

“Contrary to Annex 7, RS authorities wish to permanently bar their return with their activities related to the construction of the motorway through Kozarac, cutting it in half, and sending those who have already returned home back to exile again, but this time permanently. The authorities of the smaller BiH entity should relocate the planned motorway route in the same way it was done in the case of returnee settlements in the Modriča area, so as to avoid the demolition of returnees’ houses in the Kozarac area as well”, BiH Presidency Chairman Komšić says in his message./ibna