OHR’s Statement at the International Agency’s Joint Press Conference

Scheffer and Solana visit Sarajevo


NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer andJavier Solana, the Secretary
General of the Council of the EU and High Representative for the Common Foreign
and Security Policy, will visit Sarajevo on Thursday for talks with the BiH
Presidency and Council of Ministers and representatives of the International
Community, including High Representative Paddy Ashdown, COMSFOR Major General
Virgil L. Packett II and EUPM Police Commissioner Kevin Carty.


Mr de Hoop Scheffer and Mr Solana are visiting BiH in order to discuss
details of the changeover, at the end of this year, from SFOR to EUFOR.


As you know, the UN Security Council has just extended SFOR’s mandate until
the end of the year, noting at the same time that EUFOR will take over in the
New Year. This is in line with the comprehensive policy on security for BiH
adopted by the European Council on 17-18 June 2004.


There will be a press conference at the OHR at 14.30 on Thursday and then
another press event at the EUPM Headquarters, starting at 15.25. We will be
issuing details about all the media opportunities in a media advisory in due
course.


 


SDHR Fassier on Round Table


The Senior Deputy High Representative, Bernard Fassier, is taking part this
morning in a roundable in

Sarajevo


organized by the Institute for War and Peace Reporting.  The roundtable
will analyze the negative impact which the continued liberty of indicted war
criminals is having on

Bosnia and Herzegovina

.  Ambassador Fassier will
reiterate BiH’s obligation to cooperate fully with the ICTY. Nine years after
the war, the two most wanted indictees, Radovan Karadzic and Ratko Mladic,
remain at large, blocking BiH ‘s path toward European integration. BiH has not
been invited to join NATO’s PfP programme because of its failure to respect
international law. It will not be invited to join PfP until this is fixed.
Likewise, failure to cooperate fully with the ICTY is bedeviling BiH’s efforts
to meet the criteria set out in the EC’s Feasibility Study for BiH to begin
Stabilization and Association talks with the EU. There is too a fundamental
issue of justice — in a country governed by the rule of law, the law simply
cannot be flouted. Those accused of crimes must stand trial.


 


Monthly Economic newsletter


I have brought along copies of OHR’s monthly economic report. This report
brings together monthly figures that offer a snapshot of the BiH economy. This
month’s report shows that BiH’s financial position — the strength of its
currency and banking sector — continues strong, which is a basic prerequisite
for economic growth. However, employment growth is sluggish and the trade
figures continue to run at a deficit.