Statement by H.E. Ambassador ISHIKANE Kimihiro, Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations, at the United Nations Security Council Debate on Bosnia and Herzegovina

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May 10, 2023

Madam President,

I thank High Representative Christian Schmidt for the detailed inputs, and thank the participation of Chairwoman of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina Ms. Željka Cvijanović.

We would like to reassure you of Japan’s unwavering support for the High Representative and his office. Recognizing the importance of the role of the High Representative, Japan has been contributing a fair amount of the budget of his office since its inception.

I also welcome the representative of Bosnia and Herzegovina to the meeting.

Madam President,

More than 27 years have passed since the brutal conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina came to an end. Achieving prosperity is critical, not only for the country’s future but also for the peace and stability of the Western Balkans.

Japan strongly supports Bosnia and Herzegovina’s sovereignty and national unity, regardless of ethnicity, religion, or political affiliation. Since the Dayton Peace Agreement, Japan has been consistently providing assistance to the citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina in areas such as healthcare, education, and demining. Our support for nation-building and national reconciliation efforts continues to this day.

Madam President,

Bosnia and Herzegovina is facing an important juncture now. It has transitioned from conflict to peace, but the question remains how it can achieve a successful future. In that context, Japan welcomes the formation of the governments at State and Entity levels, including the Federation government that was recently established under the initiative of the High Representative. Japan encourages all the elected politicians to unite and move forward towards constructive nation building.

Japan is deeply concerned about the statements and actions challenging the country’s sovereignty and territorial integrity that would undermine the foundation of Dayton Peace Agreement. We strongly urge all political leaders to have a constructive attitude for the future of the country.

Madam President,

The accession of the Western Balkans to the EU is an important step towards attaining a united Europe.  We hope this will present an opportunity for the country to further advance the necessary reforms to achieve greater integration.

In conclusion, Japan remains committed to supporting Bosnia and Herzegovina’s prosperity through steady development. We will continue to work towards peace and stability in the Western Balkans.

I thank you.

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