Komsic: SNSD and HDZ BiH might block 2022 general election in Bosnia

NEWS 19.05.2021 19:25
Željko Komšić
Source: Željko Komšić (N1)

According to the Croat member of Bosnia’s tripartite Presidency, Zeljko Komsic, the main Serb and Croat ethnic political parties in the country openly work for the interests of Serbia and Croatia and could even try to block the 2022 general election.

Komsic said that he is not sure whether he will run for the Presidency post in the 2022 election, arguing that the election may not even take place as it could be blocked by the Alliance of Independent Social Democrats (SNSD) and the Croat Democratic Union (HDZ BiH).

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SNSD leader Milorad Dodik, who is the current Chairman of the BiH Presidency,  and HDZ BiH leader, Dragan Covic, are political allies and according to Komsic, the former even lobbied for the latter in the international scene.

Komsic said that the EU Special Representative in Bosnia, Johann Sattler, favours Covic.

He spoke about changes to Bosnia's Election Law, arguing that what Sattler, as well as US Ambassador, Eric Nelson, and other international community representatives are currently discussing with the HDZ, the SNSD and the main Bosniak party in the country, the Party of Democratic Action (SDA), “can only lead to failure.”

“We will be happy if we adopt amendments to the Election Law that decriminalize the electoral process. From the moment the voting starts until the end of the appeal process, we have a compromised and corrupt election process. If we change these provisions – we would do a great thing for BiH,” he said.

“We would restore people's trust that it is worth going to the polls, that no one will steal their vote. The results would be different and something fairer could be initiated in BiH,” he said.

The German government said that it is of the opinion that the principle of ‘legitimate representation’ discussed in the context of electoral reform could further deepen the division of BiH and complicate the implementation of European Court of Human Rights rulings regarding Bosnia.

The concept of “legitimate representation” is the core idea of HDZ BiH initiatives for electoral reform.

According to Komsic, “the position of the German government and what was written by a group of members of the European Parliament is logical.”

“All people are the same. Everyone must have the same active and passive rights. These rights are among the basic human rights. Of course, Germany will stand behind its principle,” he said.

Komsic said that this represents a blow to the concept of ‘constitutive peoples’ – which are in Bosnia only Bosniaks, Croats and Serbs – and according to him, rightly so.

“We in BiH experience classic discrimination of people depending on the area where they live, their ethnicity, and not to mention those who do not have a defined ethnicity,” he stressed.

The HDZ BiH and the SNSD promote the interests of neighbouring Croatia and Serbia, respectively, Komsic argued.

He gave the example of the construction of the Peljesac Bridge, which Croatia is building across Bosnian waters and which he said was supported by HDZ BiH official.

“The HDZ BiH and the SNSD are branches of Zagreb and Belgrade. That is our tragedy,” he said, arguing that this is meanwhile a well-known and accepted fact in Bosnia.

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