Komšić Says Croatia Waging “Diplomatic Aggression” against Bosnia

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ZAGREB, October 30, 2018 – The newly-elected Croat member of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s tripartite presidency Željko Komšić sent a letter to EU leaders on Tuesday saying that Croatian members of the European Parliament were saying untruths about the situation in Bosnia and Herzegovina and accusing Croatia of “a diplomatic aggression” on Bosnia and Herzegovina.

The letter which Komšić’s Democratic Front (DF) party forwarded to the media was sent to European Parliament President Antonio Tajani, European Council President Donald Tusk, European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker, the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, and European Enlargement and Neighbourhood Policy Commissioner Johannes Hahn.

Komšić said that in their recent joint statement, criticising the outcome of the recent election in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatian members of the European Parliament stated “a number of untruths about the election process in Bosnia and Herzegovina.”

The 11 Croatian MEPs last Thursday sent a joint letter to EU officials regarding the October 7 general election, expressing deep concern that the Croat representative in the State Presidency was elected by Bosniaks while a vast majority of Croats voted for another candidate.

Komšić said that his letter was also prompted by “an open diplomatic aggression by an EU member against Bosnia and Herzegovina.”

In a recent diplomatic offensive Croatia’s Prime Minister Andrej Plenković warned before EU institutions about Croats in Bosnia and Herzegovina not being equal to the other two constituent peoples after Komšić was elected to the Presidency owing to Bosniak votes. Referring to the Constitution of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Komšić said that the October election was conducted in line with the existing constitution and laws even though his election is not questionable in terms of legality but in terms of legitimacy.

Komšić said that in their letter to the EU’s Foreign Affairs Council, the Croatian MEPs had shown a political tendency to violate provisions of the Dayton peace agreement. “The letter by the Croatian MEPs is yet another attack by Croatia on Bosnia and Herzegovina’s sovereignty, its sovereign right to decide on its election system or, more precisely, it is an act of direct interference by Croatia in Bosnia and Herzegovina’s internal affairs, which is contrary both to international law and order and to usual relations between two sovereign countries,” Komšić said.

Komšić went on to say that the Croatian MEPs and Croatian politicians were wrong to say that Bosnia and Herzegovina is “a state of two entities and three constituent peoples” because the preamble to the constitution, based on the Dayton agreement which put an end to the war in the country in 1995, says that Bosniaks, Croats and Serbs, as the constituent peoples, determine the country’s constitution together with other ethnic groups and citizens.

“The Croatian MEPs ignore the fact that Bosnia and Herzegovina is a country of three constituent peoples as well as other citizens and other ethnic groups. Referring selectively to its constitution and only to the constituent peoples, without mentioning other ethnic groups and other citizens, promotes discrimination, and excludes other citizens and other ethnic groups as a constituent of the state,” said Komšić, who, even though expected to represent Croats in the collective state presidency, promotes himself as a representative of all citizens.

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