Republika Srpska (RS) is more stable than before and is capable of functioning on its own, according to the President of the Bosnia's Serb-dominated part who spoke on occasion of the RS Day on Wednesday, taking place on January 9th despite a Constitutional Court ban.
Republika Srpska is the better part of Bosnia, Zeljka Cvijanovic told RS public broadcaster RTRS, adding that she wished Bosnia's other entity, the Federation (FBiH), was the same.
RS authorities are marking the holiday on Wednesday despite a 2015 decision of the state-level Constitutional Court which acted upon a motion of a Bosniak politician and said that marking the RS Day on January 9 was unconstitutional.
According to the court, marking January 9 as the RS Day discriminates non-Serbs in this entity since this date is also the Orthodox day of St. Stephen.
RS authorities never approved of this decision and continued observing the date.
Republika Srpska is more prosperous in terms of harmonisation of its legislation with the European Union (EU) standards, although the entity is often labelled as a culprit, said Cvijanovic.
On occasion of the RS Day, Cvijanovic decorated Prime Minister of Serbia, Ana Brnabic, with the Order of Republika Srpska, the highest recognition of this entity. Previously, the medal was given to the former Serb officials some of whom were convicted war criminals.
Previous recipients of the Order are, among others, Radovan Karadzic, the former President of the RS who is appealing a war crimes sentence at an international court and former RS President Biljana Plavsic, who also served a war crimes sentence.
Brnabic accepted the decoration, saying that this confirms “a responsible policy of the Government and the President of Serbia.”
Serbia and Republika Srpska have “a brotherly relation, which overcomes formal, ordinary frameworks of bilateral cooperation,” said Serbia's senior official.
Cvijanovic also decorated Russia's Ambassador to Bosnia Petr Ivantsov with the Republika Srpska Flag Order for, as she said, exceptional credits in the international cooperation and strengthening the peace as well as for his contribution to overall relations between RS and Serbia.