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Bosnia and Herzegovina

Yearbook 2009

2009 Bosnia and HerzegovinaBosnia and Herzegovina. In March, the international community appointed Austrian diplomat Valentin Inzko a new so-called High Representative in Bosnia and Herzegovina, with the task of overseeing the peace process. According to countryaah, Inzko succeeded Miroslav Lajcak, who held the post for almost two years. When US Vice President Joe Biden came to visit in May, he strongly urged political leaders to work across ethnic borders so that the country can begin to function as a nation.

2009 Bosnia and Herzegovina

In June, the envoy Inzko made it clear that it is not doing so yet: he used his special powers to annul laws passed in the Serbian Republic of the Republic of Srpska. According to Inzko, the laws violated the Dayton Agreement, the peace settlement at the end of the war in 1995. The Bosnian rebels were allowed to retaliate on no less than 68 points, including control of the judiciary, customs revenue, foreign trade and police operations.

The stifled contradictions between the country's ethnic groups created a deadlock that increasingly emerged as the worst political crisis since the end of the war. From time to time, the Republican Srpska's leadership threatened with a referendum to break off its territory. This could lead to new outbreaks of violence, mainly Bosnians in the other region, the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, said. In October, politicians from both camps gathered for talks under the leadership of a US representative and the EU, represented by Swedish Foreign Minister Carl Bildt. The agenda mainly consisted of constitutional changes to strengthen central power and simplify the complicated bureaucracy that is a result of compromises in Dayton Peace.

Former Bosnian Serb leader Radovan Karadžić, who was arrested in Serbia in July 2008, continued to claim that he had immunity from prosecution at the UN War Crimes Tribunal in The Hague. Karadžić, who was charged with genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity during the 1992-95 war, refused to stand when the trial against him began in October. He claimed that he was going to stand for his own defense, pointing out that he needed time to read the nearly one million pages of evidence presented by prosecutors.

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