Chairman of the Presidency of BiH Dragan Covic, and members of the Presidency Bakir Izetbegovic and Mladen Ivanic, thanked Pope Francis for the audience and conveyed greetings of all peoples and citizens of BiH, as announced by the Presidency of BiH.
Members of the Presidency of BiH discussed the current situation with Pope Francis. They emphasized the importance of improvement of political relations and intensification of reform processes, as well as fulfilling the conditions for strengthening the European perspective of BiH.
In that context, they especially noted that the Questionnaire will be submitted to the high officials of the European Commission, which is scheduled for February 28, this year. They also emphasized the importance of the recently published Strategy on Enlargement for the Western Balkans region, with which was nored the open prospective of EU membership for all Western Balkan countries.
From the Presidency was also added that Covic, Izetbegovic and Ivanic expressed their gratitude towards the Pope Francis and the Holy See for all the support they have provided to BiH. Moreover, they expressed their hope that this support will be continued in the future period as well, when it comes to the progress towards full membership in the EU.
After the audition with Pope Francis, members of the Presidency of BiH attended a meeting with Cardinal Pietro Parolin, the Secretary of State of the Holy See. On that occasion, they stated that bilateral relations between BiH and the Holy See are friendly, with a high level of understanding and agreement on the most important political issues when it comes to bilateral and international relations.
Cardinal Parolino stated that the Holy See supports BiH, because a stable BiH with a European prospect is in its interest as well. Cardinal also noted that the Holy See supports the strengthening of cultural and inter-religious dialogue, coexistence and the multi-ethnic character of BiH, as concluded from the Presidency of BiH.