The Serb member of Bosnia’s tripartite Presidency, Milorad Dodik, thanked French President Emmanuel Macron on Friday for calling Bosnia a “ticking time-bomb.”
In an interview with the Economist, published on Thursday, France’s Emmanuel Macron said that Bosnia is a major concern in the Balkans.
"If you're concerned about this region, the first question is neither Macedonia, nor Albania, it's Bosnia and Herzegovina. The time-bomb that's ticking right next to (the EU member) Croatia, and which faces the problem of returning jihadists," Macron said, referring to escaped or released Islamic State fighters who could return to Europe.
Dodik, who frequently called for the dissolution of Bosnia along ethnic lines, said he was “thankful to President Macron for informing the world and the French public about the truth which I am pointing out for a long time now when it comes to Bosnia and Herzegovina.”
He complained that he faced criticism by some in the international community every time he said the same thing Macron did.
Macron’s statement represents a “responsible approach” to Bosnia’s issues, Dodik said.
Macron has admitted that “such a monstrously set up Bosnia and Herzegovina represents a danger to the EU because of Islamic terrorism and jihadist fighters who were recruited in Bosnia for battlefields in Syria and Iraq and are now returning to the country,” the Bosnian Serb leader said.
“The West has been encouraging Sarajevo’s hegemonistic and centralist circles for years, which resulted in Bosnia and Herzegovina turning into a completely dysfunctional community after the Dayton Peace Agreement (which ended the Bosnian war),” he said, adding that because of that approach, Bosnia has “slipped into complete Islamist extremism” thanks to “political circles in Sarajevo."
Dodik said that the situation in Bosnia is “unsustainable” and that if one of the world’s leaders describes a country as the main problem in the region and gives reasons for it, then he has nothing to add.