Bosnian Serb entity parliament rejects sanctions against Russia

NEWS 06.06.2022 22:14
Source: N1

Entity parliament of Bosnia's Serb-majority region Republika Srpska passed a set of conclusions in a special session on Monday, one of them reaffirming a neutral stance on what was called the Russia-Ukraine conflict and another one on rejecting sanctions against Russia.

The delegates adopted the set of conclusions proposed by the ruling coalition with 48 votes in favour, while majority of the opposition MPs did not attend the voting.

Milorad Dodik, the Serb member of Bosnia's tripartite Presidency, who addressed the session assessed it as “significant” for a potential future strategy on the Republika Srpska's foreign policy position.

He told the opposition delegates he would beat them in the elections.

“I have been thinking for the past eight years to step down, but I will not – because of you, and I will defeat you again,” he stressed, sparking the reaction among the opposition delegates.

Dodik also said it was necessary to stop the “noise” about Bosnia and Herzegovina introducing the sanctions against Russia, adding that “the Muslims” – which is how he referred to the Bosniaks – have a “stronger lobby.”

He stressed that NATO has no mandate in Bosnia and Herzegovina, but that there is the Althea mission, which is the European security framework. “That is in our interest too,” he added.

The entity parliament, with Dodik's SNSD-led majority also postponed for another six months the withdrawal from the state-level institutions, which was announced in December last year –  a step widely interpreted as the secessionist move by the Bosnian Serb-majority entity.

The adopted document contains ten conclusions:

1. The National Assembly of Republika Srpska has adopted the Information on the International, Political and Security Situation – the Position and Role of Republika Srpska.

2. Republika Srpska remains committed to preserving the peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina and the region through cooperation within regional integration and security initiatives, and also supports the inclusion of Bosnia and Herzegovina in the Open Balkans Initiative.

3. Republika Srpska is committed to respecting, adhering to and implementing the Dayton Agreement, as well as to the integration of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Republika Srpska into the European Union, while respecting the principle of mutual respect, and it believes that the two processes are compatible and complementary.

4. The National Assembly of Republika Srpska has concluded that making decisions regarding the conflict between Russia and Ukraine is within the competence of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and that the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina has not made a decision on imposing sanctions on the Russian Federation.

5. Bosnia and Herzegovina's foreign policy is the responsibility of the BiH Presidency, and only decisions made by consensus and constitutionally in the BiH Presidency can be considered the official position of Bosnia and Herzegovina on foreign policy issues, and accordingly condemns unilateral actions and actions of representatives of BiH institutions beyond official positions.

6. The National Assembly of Republika Srpska is asking the representatives of Republika Srpska in the joint institutions of Bosnia and Herzegovina to vote against the imposing of sanctions on the Russian Federation and to advocate a neutral position of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Republika Srpska in the Russian-Ukrainian conflict.

7. The National Assembly of Republika Srpska finds the ALTHEA mission necessary in order to preserve peace and stability and that it should remain in Bosnia and Herzegovina in accordance with the mandate it was given by the resolution of the United Nations Security Council.

8. The National Assembly of Republika Srpska has instructed the Government of Republika Srpska to take all measures to provide all citizens of Republika Srpska with a sufficient amount of food, energy and electricity, and to mitigate the inflationary impact on the living standards of citizens.

9. The National Assembly of the Republika Srpska has concluded that the application of the Conclusions regarding the Information on the transfer of competencies from the Republika Srpska to the level of BiH, dating back to 10 December 2021 are postponed for six months to avoid further complicating of the foreign policy position of Republika Srpska in the complex geopolitical circumstances.

10. The conclusions shall enter into force on the day following that of their adoption.

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