Bosnian Officials Slam Grabar-Kitarović over Alleged Statement about ‘Militant Islam’ in Bosnia

Total Croatia News

ZAGREB, July 31, 2019 – The Croat and Bosniak members of the Bosnian Presidency, Željko Komšić and Šefik Džaferović respectively, on Tuesday strongly attacked Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović over her alleged statement to Israeli reporters that Bosnia and Herzegovina “is now controlled by militant Islam.”

The Jerusalem Post reported on its website that, Grabar-Kitarović, who is on a state visit to Israel, said BiH “was very unstable, and had in some respects been taken over by people who have connections with Iran and terrorist organizations.”

The paper was reporting details of her closed-door meeting with Israeli President Reuven Rivlin.

“The country is now controlled by militant Islam, which is dominant in setting the agenda,” the paper reported Grabar-Kitarović as saying, without naming sources.

Komšić said Grabar-Kitarović was “unstable and not BiH,” while Džaferović accused her of “repeating lies which spread xenophobia.”

“I’m sorry that the Croatian president is continuing with propaganda at the expense of BiH, stating brutal untruths. However, when it comes to these imputations, it seems this is not the exception but the rule in Grabar-Kitarović’s attitude towards BiH,” Komšić said in a press release.

He accused her of a “malicious attitude” towards the neighbouring country. “Such perseverance in propaganda against BiH only additionally strengthens our belief that it is the services of the Republic of Croatia that wish to stage in BiH something which would damage the reputation of our state, closing its door to NATO and EU membership, and thereby bringing its survival into question.”

BiH Presidency Chairman Džaferović said in a press release that Grabar-Kitarović’s statements proved that Croatia had a “fascist policy” towards BiH. “It’s clear to everyone in Europe and the world that these are lies fabricated by Zagreb’s aggressive and xenophobic policy towards BiH and Bosniaks, which has all the elements of fascism.”

“The statements by the Croatian president represent the same propaganda vocabulary which was used by convicted war criminals and leaders of the so-called Herceg-Bosna as they tried to justify the monstrous crimes they committed against Bosniaks,” said Džaferović.

He linked Grabar-Kitarović’s alleged statements in Israel to a recent visit by Croatian Parliament Deputy Speaker Milijan Brkić to convicted war criminal Bruno Stojić, calling her out for not condemning the visit, “which the president of any civilised country would do.”

“In this way, Grabar-Kitarović supported that joint criminal enterprise policy which is the real source of instability and undermines peace in the region,” Džaferović said.

Speaking to the press after meeting Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu on Monday, Grabar-Kitarović said the two countries had to bring the attention of Europe and the US to the situation in their respective regions.

We can do a lot of good but we can also sink into chaos. Therefore, we have to monitor what is going on around us and, as far as Croatia is concerned, help neighbouring countries – BiH and Macedonia – to come under the wing of the European Union, the Croatian president said.

Netanyahu warned of the danger of radical Islam, saying it wanted to return humanity to the darkest ages and that Israel was on the front line.

If Israel was not here, the Middle East would fall into the hands of radical Islam. By defending ourselves, we are defending all of the Middle East and by defending the Middle East, we are defending Europe, he added.

More news about relations between Croatia and Bosnia and Herzegovina can be found in the Politics section.


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