Member of the Presidency of BiH Bakir Izetbegovic met with the Head of the EU Delegation to BiH and EU Special Representative Lars-Gunnar Wigemark.
Izetbegovic informed Wigemark about the facts that refer to the current issues in relations between BiH and Croatia and about the previously issued stands of BH institutions on the construction of Peljesac Bridge. He noted that the aim of BiH is not to prevent Croatia from connecting its territories but to protect its own interests and realize its right to the access to the open sea, which belongs to the Convention of UN on the Law of the Sea as a maritime state.
He emphasized that the realization of this right, as well as the right of Croatia to connect its territories, requires a resolution of the border issue between the two countries, and he recalled that this is also the official position of the Presidency of BiH from 2007, on which Croatia has been already officially informed.
Izetbegovic also reminded Wigemark that in the process of granting funds to Croatia for the construction of the Peljesac bridge, within the pre-feasibility study that was conducted by the European Commission, it was foreseen to reach an agreement between the two states with the EU mediation, with the aim to avoid a potential problem and prevent violation of the international law and the UN Convention on the right to the sea by Croatia, as announced by the Presidency of BiH.
“Unfortunately, this stand was ignored, and the official views of the Presidency of BiH and other BH institutions were ignored as well, so the European Commission granted funds to Croatia without any official consultations with BiH,” as said in the statement.
Izetbegovic also stated that he expects the EU institutions to start with mediation between BiH and Croatia soon, in order to resolve this issue by an agreement that will be in the interest of both countries, as well as the EU itself.