FM Turkovic: BiH’s Membership in the EU is a very important strategic Issue

The Minister of Foreign Affairs of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH), Bisera Turkovic said yesterday that regional cooperation and coordination with other neighboring countries is of key importance for BiH, and membership in the European Union (EU) is a very important strategic issue.

As one of the speakers at the conference “BiH – 30 years of modern independence – challenges and prospects on the path to EU membership” held online in the organization of the Embassy of BiH in Copenhagen and in cooperation with the Danish Helsinki Committee for Human Rights, she underlined that BiH has a thousand-year statehood and history.

She emphasized that BiH has great economic potentials in which the majority of citizens are struggling to be productive and reliable partners to the EU, and they are fully committed to preserving European values.

However, there are minorities who are trying to jeopardize BiH’s progress and portray it as a dysfunctional state, but despite these obstacles, BiH has signed a Stabilization and Association Agreement with other countries, which happened to BiH in 1999 when leaders made it clear that BiH’s future is in the EU.

“It is a great pity that today, instead of seeing BiH progress towards the EU, we are facing a resurgence of extremism, the celebration of convicted war criminals, and the systematic distribution of false news. This threatens the essence of democracy and hard-won reforms over the past 20 years,” Turkovic stressed.

Since BiH is not integrated into the EU, such actions have a tendency to grow, Turkovic believes, and the way to resist that is to embrace BiH and support its democratic values ​​within the EU community.

“We must all stand up for liberal democracy and multinationality. Ethnonationalism, hatred, genocide, and glorification of war criminals have no place in our society if we want to be democratic countries with equal rights for all citizens,” said the BiH Foreign Minister.

Respect for BiH sovereignty and territorial integrity is key to the future development and prosperity of the entire Western Balkans region, Turkovic mentioned, adding that words were not enough, but clear moves were needed in that direction.

“EU membership is not a matter of political decision, but a generational political and social choice made at an important historical moment. It is also a strategic need due to the central position of this region in European security,” concluded Minister Turkovic, who called on the EU to speak with one voice and impose sanctions on those who intend to challenge the progress made.

Yesterday‘s conference aims to present the current political relations in BiH and the Western Balkans in a better way to the members of the Danish Parliament, the broad political and scientific audience in Denmark, BiH, and beyond, in the context of global European and world political turmoil.

The organizers explained that this is a very important conference, especially at a time when BiH is going through one of the biggest political challenges in its recent history, while also marking 30 years of modern independence.

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