Mogherini and Hahn visit BiH

Mogherini and Hahn visit BiH

Sarajevo, December 5, 2014 / Independent Balkan News Agency

By Mladen Dragojlovic

High Representative of the EU for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, and EU Commissioner for Enlargement and European Neighbourhood Policy, Johannes Hahn, visited Sarajevo on Friday and held several meetings with the aim to stir BiH from the “dead point” towards the path of the EU.

Mogherini and Hahn are the highest EU officials to visit BiH since elections in BiH and the EU. They held meetings with politicians and representatives of civil sector in a attempt to push political leaders to begin internal negotiations about the country’s future.

After meeting with leaders of political parties in BiH, Mogherini emphasised that the conditions for BiH’s entrance in the Union are same and will remain same in future.

“We can discuss changes in the agenda, and the path to improve the approach to some questions, such as social and economic reforms and the functionality of the state”, said Mogherini on the press conference after meeting.

She said that leaders expressed political will to fulfill the conditions expected by the EU and, on a new base, continue on the path of a full membership in the Union. Mogherini added that she and Hahn will present a report about this visit on the meeting of ministers of foreign affairs of EU countries, on December 15. After that, political leaders in BiH will have deadline to reach agreement and sign an document to confirm their will to make changes and meet conditions so that BiH applies for candidate status.

“After that, we will define further steps in order to concretise that political will for the continuation of BiH process towards EU integration”, said Mogherini.

BiH leaders after meeting had different opinions but all of them agreed on one thing – BiH needs a new approach and new ideas, as it is the UK-German initiative, to finally make further steps in order to bring the country closer to fulfilling the EU standards. Chairman of BiH Presidency and leader of the party of democratic progress, Mladen Ivanic, told the media that it will be necessary for politicians show more will and for the EU to open the door a bit more.

“What’s new in this case is that EU representatives did not bring any document. For the first time the document will be created by local politicians. Presidency will make that document in the next few weeks. I am optimist”, said Ivanic.

President of Serb democratic party, Mladen Bosic, said that “this is a chance that must not be missed”.

“This is a chance to try to define relations in a new manner. These relations can create different political atmosphere to look in the future and not to live in the past any more”, said Bosic.

President of RS and leader of alliance of independent social democrats, Milorad Dodik, told the media that he is convinced that vice president of the Party of Democratic Action, Bakir Izetbegovic, will inhibit the process and impose solutions unacceptable for others.

BiH Presidency member and leader of Croatian democratic union, Dragan Covic, is also optimist but expects problems in the agreement about essential political questions. He emphasised that it is time for politicians to start dealing with the real life of BiH citizens.

Izetbegovic left the meeting before it ended and, on the exit, just said to media that he believes the situation will go in the right direction in the future.

Mogherini and Hahn said that this is their first, but not the last visit to BiH. They announced that the next visit would come soon and that the EU will continue to support BiH.