Bosnia’s Presidency Chairman Bakir Izetbegovic told Faktor.ba that Bosnian institutions and he, personally, did everything to help the Bosnian student arrested in Turkey on suspicion of conspiring with FETO organisation, which Turkey accused of planning a coup.
“We are working on helping the student intensively. We talked less but worked a lot more. My cabinet was included in this during the whole time. This is not something resolved over a phone call between the two presidents, (Recep Tayyip) Erdogan and I,” Izetbegovic said.
“The situation will be resolved by the hard work of our Consulate in Turkey and the Bosnian Ambassador and Bosnian institutions working in the field,” he said.
A Bosnian student named Selmir Masetovic was arrested in the Turkish town of Usak on May 22 on charges that he is a member of FETO, which Turkey declared an armed, terrorist organisation. Turkey’s Prosecutors’ Office informed the General Consulate of Bosnia and Herzegovina of the arrest on May 25.
Masetovic is currently held at a detention centre in Usak, Turkey. Bosnia’s Embassy in Ankara has been following the case closely and requested for the young man to be released pending trial.
Faktor.ba asked Izetbegovic about the Election Law changes and the ongoing negotiations between political leaders, to which he said that the Croat Democratic Union (HDZ BiH) wants to “deny the citizens the ability to vote according to their own conviction and choice and that the election be strictly limited o members of their own ethnic group, which is in absolute conflict with the European and democratic standards in general.”
“But still, there is a minimum chance that reason will prevail and that a solution for the upcoming election will be found, thus avoiding a governmental crisis. That solution must be in line with the Constitution of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina (FBiH) entity, of course,” Izetbegovic stressed.
“Bosnian Croats make up 22 percent of the FBiH population and they make up 40 percent of the FBiH Government, at the state level they make up only 12 percent of the population, but at the state level government they make up 33 percent of the government,” Izetbegovic pointed out and added:
“They (the Croats) are participating in the government to the Bosniaks’ detriment and Bosniaks will have to get rid of the dictatorship of a minority over the majority and they will have to fight for the position which belongs to them in accordance with the Constitution. That is proportional representation in governmental structures,” Izetbegovic concluded.
Two years ago the Constitutional Court ruled that some provisions of the Election Law were inconsistent with the state Constitution. Since then the authorities have failed to act in the legally allowed timeframe resulting in a further court ruling to delete two sections of the Election Law that treat the matter of representation in the FBiH House of Peoples.
The ongoing political talks on the electoral reform in Bosnia have been in a deadlock for some time, despite the mediation of international representatives in the country, who took the advisory role in these negotiations.