Serbs are coerced into living in Bosnia and Herzegovina because they are ready to maintain peace, but they are not ready to “endure torture by the Bosniak political elite,” Bosnian Serb leader Milorad Dodik said on Saturday, commenting a programme Declaration the main Bosniak party is expected to adopt.
The proposed SDA declaration advocates for, among other things, a ‘Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina’, the affirmation of a ‘Bosnian language’ as the ‘common identity of all of Bosnia’s citizens’, a reform of the police force and setting up a supreme court.
Dodik told reporters in Belgrade that the Declaration will be carefully analysed in Republika Srpska (RS), the Bosnian Serb-dominated semi-autonomous entity within Bosnia.
For Serbs, no ‘Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina’ exists, but only “Republika Srpska,” he said.
“If they are permitted to do something like that, then it would be completely normal for us to also believe that we are allowed to tend to the issue of self-determination and secession. We have no reason to remain with others who do not want us and who do not want to accept these realities,” he said.
The SDA is already denying Bosnia and Herzegovina as it has been set up for a while and Bosniaks want a Bosnia “on their own terms,” he said.
“This just represents one phase of what they want to do in the end, but there is no Bosnia and Herzegovina without Republika Srpska. Surely nobody is crazy, naive or dumb enough to think that someone could dissolve Republika Srpska. They surely cannot dissolve it because they neither have a reason nor the possibility to do that,” he said.
Bosnia is only being maintained by the international community, and what the SDA is doing is destroying the country, Dodik said. “It is not easy for us to accept that we are part of Bosnia and Herzegovina, but we accept a Bosnia as described in the Dayton Agreement. They obviously did not want to see, hear or maintain Republika Srpska, and we know that."
Republika Srpska is “at every moment ready to take on its own path,” he said, arguing that the RS is the only factor in Bosnia which is self-sustainable as opposed to the state as a whole and the other semi-autonomous entity, the Federation (FBiH), “because if the foreigners would leave them, they would disappear that same night,” he said.