NATO Deputy Assistant Secretary General for Political Affairs and Security Policy Javier Colomina said today in talks with members of the Joint Committee on Defence and Security of BiH and members of the BiH PA Delegation to the NATO Parliamentary Assembly that NATO pays great attention to this region and considers it strategically important.
He informed the hosts that a few days ago the NATO foreign ministers held a summit in Riga and discussed on the Western Balkans on a special session, and that many messages had been received.
“I will not hide that one message was a message of concern over the tensions that are present here in the region, both in Kosovo and in your country. But, at the same time, strong support for the sovereignty, territorial integrity of BiH, and multiethnically efficient functioning organizations, institutions, including your Armed Forces, was clearly emphasized,” said Colomina.
He stated that the cooperation between NATO and BiH continues, and that a lot of things are being done together.
“We have decided and the ministers said very clearly, as well as the heads of state and government at the Summit in Brussels, that we will increase NATO’s political engagement in the Western Balkans, because we believe that there is room to strengthen that engagement. That is the reason why I am here, to convey that message very clearly, so that we are here to support the efforts and to support BiH in its reform process, which includes economic, political and military areas,” said Colomina.
According to him, the Reform Program is a comprehensive document that talks about the level of engagement, the level of ambition.
Speaking about the Reform Program, he pointed out that it is a fundamental document.
“I must tell you that we are disappointed that we could not get a document for 2021. We would welcome if we could at least get information about the work undertaken by various institutions, so that we can convey to the allies when I return to Brussels what efforts have been made, what is being done in terms of continuing cooperation at various levels,” said Colomina.
We need, he said, that all actors in this country behave in the most constructive way.
Chairman of the Joint Committee on Defense and Security of BiH and the Delegation of the Parliamentary Assembly of BiH to the Parliamentary Assembly of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Asim Sarajlić said that they are cooperating in partnership with NATO Headquarters in Sarajevo, the NATO Secretariat and all NATO committees.
Speaking about the defense sector, he stated that the Armed Forces of BiH have gone through a very successful transition period since 2005.
Sarajlić stated that at the moment, the defense and security sector does not have a sufficient budget for further modernization.
Deputy Chair of the PABiH Delegation to the NATO PA Nikola Lovrinović pointed out that respect for laws, declarations and resolutions, as well as documents and agreements implemented with NATO “should have no alternative for us”.