Komsic: BiH, Ukraine must get EU candidate status at the same time

BiH is only a potential candidate for EU membership, lagging behind many of its other Western Balkan counterparts. But fears of regional instability and Russian influence on the Serb faction of the country have led to calls to accelerate the process. [Shutterstock/motioncenter]

Ukraine and Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) must receive EU candidate status at the same time, otherwise, it would encourage pro-Russian forces in BiH to destabilise further the country, a Croat member of the tripartite BiH presidency said.

BiH is only a potential candidate for EU membership, lagging behind many of its other Western Balkan counterparts. But fears of regional instability and Russian influence on the Serb faction of the country have led to calls to accelerate the process.

“It may sound far-fetched to some, but the degree of pro-Russian political destruction in Bosnia and Herzegovina is equal to that in Ukraine. In that sense, we cannot be comforted by the fact that they are not shooting at us if it is already clear that they are destroying the state and disavowing everything that would be beneficial for the state and all its citizens. That is why BiH and Ukraine must receive the candidate status together,” Željko Komšić told the Autonomija web portal in an interview.

Asked whether the West had learned something from Russia’s aggression against Ukraine and whether it finally realised that the key source of instability in the region is Russian influence in the Balkans by way of Serbia and the Republika Srpska – Komšić concurred.

He added it was best seen through Western moves toward anti-constitutional activities conducted by BiH presidency Serb member Milorad Dodik and the Republika Srpska authorities.

“In the political sense, so far only the United States and Great Britain have been concrete, while Germany has started with sporadic economic sanctions. Sanctions imposed on Dodik are not enough. Dodik is continuing with his destabilising policy, and he will not stop,” Komšić added.

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