US sanctions 4 top officials in Bosnia and Herzegovina for obstructing Dayton agreement

US sanctions 4 top officials in Bosnia and Herzegovina for obstructing Dayton agreement

Officials are 'directly responsible' for encouraging passage of law undermining peace deal that ended war, says Treasury Department

By Betul Yuruk

The US announced sanctions Monday on four top officials in Bosnia and Herzegovina for ''obstructing and threatening'' the implementation of the Dayton Peace Agreement, which ended the 1992-1995 war in the Balkan country.

Among the officials designated by the US Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) are Nenad Stevandic, speaker and president of the Republika Srpska (RS), the Serb entity in Bosnia and Herzegovina, RS Prime Minister Radovan Viskovic, RS Justice Minister Milos Bukejlovic and Serb member of the Bosnia and Herzegovina Presidency Zeljka Cvijanovic.

''These leaders are directly responsible for encouraging the passage of a Republika Srpska National Assembly (RSNA) law that purports to declare the decisions of the BiH Constitutional Court inapplicable in the RS, thus obstructing and threatening the implementation of the Dayton Peace Agreement,'' the Treasury Department said in a statement.

''This action threatens the stability, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the hard-won peace underpinned by the Dayton Peace Agreement.''

In late June, Republika Srpska adopted a law annulling the validity of decisions by Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Constitutional Court.

The internationally appointed High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina, Christian Schmidt, annulled the decisions taken by the entity and declared that they could not enter into force.

The entity's assembly, however, decided not to publish any decisions taken by Schmidt in its official journal.

The Constitutional Court consists of three Bosniak, three Serb and three Croat judges.

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