The Minister of Defense of Austria, Claudia Tanner, is on an official visit to Bosnia and Herzegovina, during which she met today in Sarajevo with the Minister of Defense of BiH, Sifet Podzic. A formal reception of the Minister of Defense of the Republic of Austria and a conversation between the delegations was held at the headquarters of the Ministry of Defense of BiH in Sarajevo, after which a press conference was held. Tanner said she was glad to be visiting Bosnia and Herzegovina, and thanked Podzic for the warm welcome and constructive talks. She referred to the traditionally good relations of Austria with the countries in the Balkans, and especially with BiH. "The Western Balkans is a very important region for the Republic of Austria and therefore we monitor the situation and are very militarily present and engaged in Operation EUFOR Althea because Austria, in addition to being EUFOR commander in recent years, traditionally has the largest number of troops from Austria." said Tanner. She thanked the Austrian EUFOR contingent for its support. "We, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Austria, are bound by special relations, and this is maintained in various cooperation in various fields," said Tanner. She added that the focus of bilateral cooperation is the training of BH cadets at the Theresian Military Academy, and 18 cadets from BiH are currently in Austria. "This training is going very well and I was told that the effect they achieve are very good ", Tanner pointed out. She added that Austria also wants continued cooperation. Tanner said that within the Western Balkans regional initiative, it is planned to strengthen joint cooperation in order to overcome common challenges (migration, pandemic…) and joint participation in peace support operations. "I am very much looking forward to the continuation of our bilateral cooperation with colleague and I take this opportunity once again to thank you from the bottom of my heart for the warm welcome, ”said Tanner. On that occasion, Podzic said that he was glad that the Minister of Defense of an extremely friendly country was visiting the Ministry of Defense. "It is clear to you that the Republic of Austria plays an important role both in the European Union (EU) and in the Western Balkans region, especially in BiH, and that this is represented in our country primarily by a strong embassy, through participation in the European Mission, OHR and EUFOR, "Podzic said. Referring to the cooperation between the two ministries, Podzic said that this was an example of cooperation. He added that the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic had limited the organization of certain activities in 2020. "I can tell you that we have planned to carry out 20 activities in BiH and 25 activities in Austria this year, and I hope that the epidemiological situation will allow us to realize that," Podzic said, BHRT writes.