Peace Implementation Council Steering Board Political Directors met in Sarajevo

December 6, 2018 8:00 AM

The Peace Implementation Council Steering Board (PIC SB) Political Directors met in Sarajevo on 4-5 December, 2018 to review the process of implementation of the General Framework Agreement for Peace (GFAP), which remains the basis for a stable, secure, and prosperous Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH). The PIC SB reminded all parties of their obligation to comply fully with the GFAP, all its annexes, and decisions of the High Representative. It reaffirmed its unequivocal commitment to the territorial integrity and fundamental structure of BiH as a single, sovereign state comprising two entities.

The PIC SB restated that the entities have no right to secede from BiH and only exist legally by virtue of the BiH Constitution. The PIC SB reminded authorities in BiH that the BiH Constitution is an integral part of the GFAP and that the decisions of the BiH Constitutional Court are final and binding and must be implemented. The PIC SB reiterated its full support for the High Representative in ensuring complete respect for the GFAP and carrying out his mandate under Annex 10 and relevant UN Security Council Resolutions, which remains unchanged. It underlined that the International Community retains the necessary instruments to uphold the GFAP. The PIC SB emphasized the need to fully implement the 5+2 agenda, which remains necessary for the closure of the Office of the High Representative.

The PIC SB deplored the fact that an early and divisive election campaign stalled progress on socio-economic reforms, poisoned the political atmosphere and prevented a negotiated solution on the legal gap in the Election Law related to the Federation House of Peoples. The PIC SB has noted that the OSCE/OSCE Office of Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR)-led International Election Observation Mission characterized the elections as “genuinely competitive” and also acknowledged that Mission’s concerns and those of local NGOs about numerous irregularities reported throughout the country during the election process. The PIC SB also deplored threats to the independence of the media, including intimidation and physical attacks against journalists, while also condemning attempts by certain media and politicians to distort facts, and influence the work of the Central Election Commission. The independence of the CEC is crucial for the free and fair conduct of elections and the implementation of the results.

The PIC SB deemed that full cooperation with the International Residual Mechanism for Criminal Tribunals (IRMCT) includes respecting the verdicts that both the ICTY and the Mechanism have delivered. In this context, it deplored the RSNA Conclusions of August 14 about the report of the RS Government’s Srebrenica Commission, and reaffirmed that the events in Srebrenica from 10 – 19 July 1995 have been conclusively qualified as genocide by international tribunals and national courts alike.

The PIC SB welcomed the BiH Parliament’s adoption of amendments to the BiH Criminal Procedure Code in relation to the state’s ability to fight corruption, terrorism and organized crime, which demonstrated that compromise and dialogue among political actors can bring concrete positive results.

The PIC SB Political Directors met and encouraged the newly inaugurated BiH Presidency members to make every effort on behalf of BiH to protect the interests and equality of all citizens, and contribute to the country’s reform path. The PIC SB regretted the decision of one member of the BiH Presidency to leave the meeting before the discussion had begun. The PIC SB urged the members of the Presidency to show unity, work together and respect the laws of the country, including the Law on the BiH Flag.

 

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