The Slovenia Times

No major shifts expected in Bosnia-Herzegovina after election


Sarajevo - No major changes are expected in Bosnia-Herzegovina after the presidency election, according to the editor-in-chief of Bosnian press agency FENA, Dejan Jazvić. He believes the new presidency will continue with the existing foreign and domestic policies.

According to current partial results the presidency will consist of Denis Bećirović, representing the Bosniaks, Željko Komšić representing the Croatian population, and Željka Cvijanović for the Serbian population.

While Bećirović and Cvijanović are newcomers, Komšič has already served three four-year terms. "It is clear that Komšić and Bećirović will continue the established policies, while Cvijanović will continue the work of her predecessor Milorad Dodik," Jazvić said.

He underlined that the true power lies in the national parliament, the parliaments of the two entities: the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Republika Srpska, and the assemblies of individual cantons.

"The presidency has limited powers in domestic politics, so I don't believe that Bećirović will be able to affect the electoral reform or other domestic policy issues, including the position of Croatians, from this position."

Every presidency member is leading their own foreign policy, as do the three main national political sides, Jazvić said. "To be concrete, I see no difference between Bećirović's foreign policy positions compared to the previous Bosniak representative Šefik Džaferović."

Jazvić said Komšić's victory was expected "because the Croatian voting body is simply not enough to undo the support he enjoys among Bosniaks".

Like in the past, Komšić managed to mobilise strong support among Bosniaks, managing to defeat Borjana Krišta, the single candidate backed by all Croatian parties. Jazvić believes Komšić's victory will not help to appease ethnic and political tensions in the country.

The only common points Jazvić sees among the three sides in national politics regards entering the EU. He wonders, however, whether this is a strong enough cohesive matter in a country as divided as Bosnia-Herzegovina.

Jazvić does also not expect any shifts as regards Milorad Dodik, who will take over as President of Republika Srpska from his party counterpart Cvijanić. He will insist on greater autonomy of Republika Srpska, strong ties with Serbia and Russia and continue to oppose joining NATO.

The FENA editor-in-chief also commented on the announcement of High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina Christian Schmidt that he would change the electoral legislation. Jazvić sees this as an attempt to appease Croatian dissatisfaction with being outvoted in the election of the Croatian presidency member.


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