Statement on behalf of the European Union and its Member States by H.E. Mr. Stavros Lambrinidis, Ambassador, Head of the Delegation of the European Union to the United Nations, at the Security Council Debate on the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina

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15 May 2024


I have the honour to speak on behalf of the European Union and its Member States.

Allow me also to thank High Representative Christian Schmidt for this statement.

The Candidate Countries Türkiye, North Macedonia*, Montenegro*, Albania*, Ukraine, the Republic of Moldova, as well as San Marino align themselves with this statement.

The future of Bosnia and Herzegovina and its citizens lies within the European Union. On 22 March 2024, the European Council decided to open EU accession negotiations with Bosnia and Herzegovina.  After this historic decision, the EU expects all political actors to focus on dialogue and on the key priorities to deliver reforms in line with the established EU expectations. Working together towards EU accession is key to live up to the aspirations of the citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina to be part of the European Union.

The European Union is seriously concerned about legislation and initiatives in the Republika Srpska entity that run counter to the EU path of Bosnia and Herzegovina, including secessionist rhetoric and questioning the constitutional order of the country, such as the laws on elections, on referenda and on immunity. Regarding the draft law labelling civil society groups as ‘foreign agents’, the EU restates its concern as firmly expressed in the Council Conclusions on Enlargement of 12 December 2023. Respect for human rights, freedom of expression, media freedom and pluralism, as well as freedom of operation of civil society organisations, are key pillars of a democratic society. The European Union emphasizes that the sovereignty, territorial integrity, constitutional order, including Constitutional Court decisions, and international personality of Bosnia and Herzegovina need to be respected. Any action against these principles will lead to serious consequences.

The European Union urges all political actors in Bosnia and Herzegovina to refrain from and renounce provocative divisive rhetoric and actions, including questioning the sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity of the country, and to end the glorification of convicted war criminals as well as genocide denial, and to actively promote reconciliation.

L’Union européenne réaffirme son plein soutien à l’EUFOR ALTHEA, qui continue d’aider les autorités de Bosnie-Herzégovine à maintenir un environnement où la sécurité est assurée pour tous les citoyens.

L’Union européenne réaffirme qu’il est important de poursuivre la coopération entre les acteurs internationaux et exprime son soutien à la mission et au mandat du haut représentant et de son bureau.

The European Union reiterates its unequivocal commitment to Bosnia and Herzegovina’s EU perspective as a single, united and sovereign country.

Thank you Mr. Chair.


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