EU Ambassador Wigemark calls for adoption of amendments to BiH Criminal Procedure Code

The Head of the EU Delegation and the EU Special Representative in BiH, Ambassador Lars-Gunnar Wigemark, calls on the Delegates in the House of Peoples of the Parliamentary Assembly of BiH to assume their responsibility and adopt the necessary amendments to the BiH Criminal Procedure Code:

“We are deeply concerned with the lack of adoption of the relevant amendments to the BiH Criminal Procedure Code, which need to be brought in line with the 2017 BiH Constitutional Court Decision as well as international and European standards.

Amendments already tabled in the BiH Parliamentary Assembly, and adopted in the House of Representatives, do meet the required standards. But other proposed amendments, tabled so far, would weaken the rule of law and undermine the ability of the judiciary to fight serious crime, in particular organised crime and corruption. Specifically, exempting certain criminal offences such as fraud in office or embezzlement in office and terrorism sends a negative signal towards both BiH citizens and the EU.

We urge the delegates in the House of Peoples to swiftly adopt the final amendments to the BiH Criminal Procedure Code, thereby demonstrating their commitment to act as a credible partner of the European Union and its Member States in fighting serious crime and ensuring public security in Bosnia and Herzegovina and beyond.

This is an essential question for the rule of law in BiH and will also be taken into account in the preparation of the Commission Opinion on BiH’s application for EU Membership.”