“Bosniaks (Bosnian Muslims) are now making the same mistake the Serbs naively made in the former Yugoslavia,” says Milorad Dodik.
As a result, “they have everyone against them,” the president of the Serb entity in Bosnia-Herzegovina, the Serb Republic (RS), told the Croatian daily Vecernji List.
According to Dodik, “the Serbs felt that Yugoslavia belonged to them and that was a catastrophic mistake – they lost Yugoslavia.”
“The Bosniaks believe that ‘Bosnia’ is theirs, one where there are no Croats or Serbs, or one where there are Croats like Lijanovic, and Serbs that they want, like Bosic. Of course, such a state cannot pass and they will lose. Now Bosniaks follow the same pattern of arrogance that Serbs did when they were under Milosevic,” Dodik has been quoted as saying.
As he said, the Croats and the Serbs have to a large extent solved their problems in the Balkans – “although the ugliest way possible” – while in Bosnia-Herzegovina “these relations are being duplicated.”
As for Bosnia-Herzegovina moving closer to the EU, Dodik said the RS “has no problem with that, but the mechanism of coordination and harmonization of policies at the national level should be taken into account, without attempting to impose solutions.”
Asked whether he was “under pressure from Belgrade because of Serbia’s European path,” Dodik said there was “no pressure” and that relations with Serbia are based “solely on partnership.”
When asked whether his recent visit to Moscow made him “a Russian player,” Dodik responded jokingly: “Look, in a week I will go to China, perhaps some will say that I am a Chinese man.”
Asked whether he was “planning a new referendum, at which citizens would decide about an independent RS,” Dodik said that this was not the agenda, and is not being thought about.
“If some day we find ourselves in that position, it will happen in a referendum. I talk about it mostly when answering questions from journalists. If we speak in general, things must be resolved in referendums here. One day there will also be a Croats’ referendum, who will in that way defend their rights,” said RS President.
Dodik was also asked “whether he was the biggest problem of Bosnia-Herzegovina – as could be heard from the political Sarajevo and a part of the international community.”
“If I am judged on the basis of not being ready to accept the annulling of the status of the RS and of us here, then I am,” said Dodik./IBNA