Republika Srpska (RS), Bosnia’s Serb-majority part, needs an auxiliary police unit to ensure security for all citizens living there, RS Interior Minister Dragan Lukac said on Thursday justifying draft changes to the law that foresee the creation of an additional police unit.
The Minister said on Saturday the unit would be composed of young people who would be summoned only when necessary and would have the same competencies as active police officers engaged in police duties.
The reserve unit would respond to safety challenges such as a migrant crisis, natural disasters or other situations where citizens need help.
The announcement of the changes to the Law on Police and Internal Affairs in Republika Srpska prompted reactions in Bosnia’s other entity, the Federation (FBiH).
The leader of the left-leaning Civic Alliance party, Nihad Colpa, called upon the Peace Implementation Council (PIC), a body composed of foreign ambassadors who oversee the implementation of the 1995 peace agreement in Bosnia, to act and prevent the formation of this police unit.
But Lukac does not see a problem.
“I have nothing against a reserve police unit being established in the Federation, I even think it is necessary,” he said on Thursday.
“We only want to have a sufficient number of police officers who will guarantee security for citizens, who will fight against migration problems, and in case of natural disasters,” he reiterated.
The additional unit should be composed of some 1,050 officers, he said.