Republika Srpska Intends to Reject Bonn Powers Granted to the Office of the High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina

Bosnian Serb leader and member of Bosnia and Herzegovina Tripartite Presidency Milorad Dodik said on 28.10.2019 that Republika Srpskaentity would reject the authority of the Office of the High Representative (OHR) for B&H and the High Representative himself, enshrined in the conclusions of the Bonn summit in 1997, as in his view these powers were given in violation of the 1995 Dayton Agreement, which ended the nearly four-year war in the country. According to Dodik, the OHR institution is an illegal instrument for the international monitoring of the civilian implementation of the Dayton Agreement. Dodik considers that all decisions of the High Representative for B&H based on the Bonn Powers should be annulled.

The Peace Implementation Council in B&H agreed at the meeting in Bonn in December 1997 to delegate its rights to the OHR for B&H with the aim to prevent nationalist leaders from delaying or hindering the implementation of the Dayton Agreement. By virtue of these rights conferred by the Peace Implementation Council, the OHR is authorized to act in the event that local parties are incapable or unwilling to act, including in regard of dismissing from public functions local officials who do not comply with the legal provisions of the Dayton Agreement.

According to the allegations of Dodik, the High Representative in B&H is “trying to shape the political system through fraud and Republika Srpska strongly rejects such an approach and model.” Milorad Dodik resents the latest decision by the OHR, part of the RS’s jurisdiction, to be transferred to B&H, which he says does not exist in the B&H Constitution.

He believes this is “a serious problem and Republika Srpska will not allow endangerment of its Constitutional positioning” as well as “to change the political system due to the behavior and lawlessness of the High Representative for B&H”, which equals to committing an international crime “intended to impose the Bonn Powers against Republika Srpska in violation of the Dayton Agreement.”

Dodik announced the convening of an extraordinary session of the parliament of Republika Srpska on November 5th this year, at which an answer should be given to a number of recent challenges, including to the Declaration of the ruling in B&H Bosniak Party of Democratic Action.

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