Gabriel Escobar for N1: There won't be a war in Bosnia, this is not 1991

Gabriel Escobar
Gabriel Escobar (N1)

People are leaving Bosnia and Herzegovina not because they do not want to live in a multi-ethnic state, they are leaving because they cannot find jobs without corrupt connections, US Special Envoy for the Western Balkans Gabriel Escobar told N1, warning that people are leaving Bosnia ten times the rate of any other country in the Western Balkans. He also denied any possibility of an armed conflict in Bosnia and Herzegovina,

He said what needs to be done is finding a way to unblock the central institutions and creating a dialogue, so the country can progress in European direction.

“It's all about the functionality at the central institutions”, Escobar said, arguing that leaving the central institutions does not contribute to that.

Answering to the question about possibility of Republika Srpska, Bosnia's Serb-majority region, deploying soldiers to the entity boundary line, he said:

“That's not going to happen. I ‘ve said this before and I want to clarify why I said it. There won't be a war in Bosnia and Herzegovina. This is not 1991. There is no army of Republika Srpska. Second of all, we have a peacekeeping mandate from the UN SC. Third, nobody is interested in that kind of escalation. Not Serbia, not Croatia, not Russia, nobody.”

As for a possibility of US imposing sanctions on individuals from Bosnia and Herzegovina, he said he does not want the people think that imposing the sanctions is the way the US engage with a country.

“There are lot of things we do in this country that are positive. Our development assistance, our political support. And so public at large doesn't need to worry about the sanctions. We're not going to sanction the country, we're not going to sanction any entity. The sanctions are really directed at people who have direct responsibility for the dysfunction and deep, deep corruption that this country suffers from,” he stressed.

Watch the full interview in the video below.

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