The International community High representative in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Valentin Inzko, is in Washington from where he stated that the progress towards the EU remains the main goal of BiH leaders from all ethnic communities.
“Recently, we have seen some significant initial steps in that direction but much more needs to be done,” Inzko sais at a panel discussion in Washington titled “BiH – Towards its European future.” The panel was hosted by Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) and the Center for Transatlantic relations.
The office of the High Representative announced that Inzko, in his remarks, outlined the issues that need to be addressed, including the respect for the Dayton Peace Agreement, in particular Annex 4, which is the Constitution.
“Bosnia and Herzegovina is a decentralised country and will remain so, barring constitutional changes agreed to by all ethnic groups. But to say that there is no state of Bosnia and Herzegovina or to deny the authorities of the state in areas like foreign policy and inter-entity law enforcement is false and harmful to reconciliation and future reform,” emphasised High Representative.
He also highlighted a deterioration in respect for the rule of law as one of the challenges. Inzko said that the Dayton Peace Agreement defines Bosnia and Herzegovina as a state governed by the ‘rule of law’. Inzko stated that the international community needs to re-engage and re-invigorate efforts to buttress the rule of law, including stronger anti-corruption efforts. This, Inzko emphasized, would help to re-energize the processes of the Euro-Atlantic integration.
“The elected leaders who have declared their commitment to EU integration need to step back from polarised positions and intensively search for compromises needed to adopt the necessary reforms. From the side of the international community, we can and should support all those who demonstrate a true commitment to making BiH a stable, functional and prosperous country, irreversibly integrated into European structures,” the High Representative concluded.
But, Inzko will have to convince the politicians in BiH that this is the way they must follow if they really want to get a step closer to the EU. The meeting he organized for the beginning of December, as it seems righ now, has already failed because most of the leaders he called to participate, refused to attend.
Inzko called leaders of the parties which make the majority in the BiH Parliament but the first cancellation came from Fahrudin Radoncic, leader of the Party for a Better Future for BiH, who said that his party is not the member of the ruling coalition any more.
After him, leaders of parties from the Republic of Srpska gathered in Alliance for Changes, also refused to go to Sarajevo and sit at the same table with Inzko.
One of them, the leader of the Party of Democratic progress Branislav Borenovic, explained that he does not want to go before Inzko to apologize for the comparison of RS with WWII Naci-established-state “Independent State of Croatia” (NDH), when spoke about January 9, RS Day. For Borenovic, that statement is debatable the whole year round but Inzko (has) never apologized…/IBNA