Tonino Picula, a Croatian MP in the European Parliament, believes that Croats in Bosnia-Herzegovina will long feel the consequences of Zagreb’s misguided policy towards Bosnia during the 1990s.
He argues that Bosnia needs to be regulated “consistently federal” and that the state must be a balance between civic and national. “I think that consistent federalization of Bosnia is a principle that can only ensure the constitutional balance, political stability and economic progress of that country in the long run,” Picula said in an interview with Dnevnik.ba.
Picula said he thinks the current Bosnia is moving away from the European Union, but does not believe Dayton 2 can happen, and stressed that it is necessary to eliminate the dominance of many nations and try to build civil society.
“The Serbian reflex for domination, which destroyed two common South Slavic states, was settled in Bosnia by the establishment of Republika Srpska, while a distinct Bosniak ethnic majority in the Federation of Bosnia varies similar mechanisms for imposing its political will,” Picula said.
He pointed out that Croats living in Bosnia will long, and perhaps forever, remember the consequences of a misguided policy that Zagreb pursued in the 1990s. He expects President-elect Zoran Milanovic to expect a more rational policy towards Bosnia and Croats than was the case with Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic.
“I think that there is a consensus in Croatia on the importance of the Croatian issue in Bosnia, but we are at odds on how to treat it, how and with whom. From the point of view of social democracy, our basic principle is to defend the rule of law, politically marginalized and socially discriminated against, and Croats in Bosnia, as the smallest constituent people, in a confused system, deserve support in the exercise of their rights,” said Picula.