The President of Republika Srpska (RS), Bosnia's Serb-dominated territorial entity, called for Russian media to increase their reach in Bosnia, but also announced that the RS Government will begin to monitor NGO operations more strictly and force them to reveal their income.
Dodik made the statement to Radio Television of Republika Srpska on Friday, speaking from a St. Petesburg, where he is attending a business forum.
He is planing to meet with Russian President Vladimir Putin the same day.
The RS President called for the establishment of a “Russian media organisation which would have electronic media in local languages, a TV programme in local languages and which would cover the region, as do N1, Al Jazeera and others who are present here for a long time and nobody thinks that is a problem anymore.”
“But, if Russia would to that, it would cause an avalanche of attacks aimed at us and the Russians,” he said.
According to the RS President, the Party for Democratic Action (SDA), which is the main Bosniak political party in the country, is together with the UK trying to influence the situation in the country.
Dodik also complained that the US Government has decided to donate millions of US Dollars to support independent media in Bosnia.
“When taking into account the true context and the relation of powers, that is aimed against us,” he said.
Dodik said he considers numerous NGOs which are present in Bosnia enemies of his Government, announcing an entity-level law that would establish a strict monitoring process over the operations of such organisations.
It would obligate NGOs to register as “foreign agents”, and force them to periodically submit the RS Government with their financial statements on donations and expenses, similar to a law Russia had passed a few years ago.
Dodik said this is the practice in place in the US as well, according to his interpretation.