Historical-Legal Analysis: The Right of BiH to the Sea?

The state of BiH has been a maritime state for centuries, and during the reign of Tvrtko I Kotromanic, we had one of the strongest fleets in the region. Medieval Bosnia was part of Dalmatia as well as a part of the coast of Montenegro. Unfortunately, we had short sighted politicians who gave up on our islands, the coast and the sea with the aim of earning a very small amount of money. Eventually, the Bosnian sea ended up with two exits, Sutorina and Neum.

We know that we already lost one exit to the sea, the one in Sutorina, in a very naive and subtle way, without any rights or arguments. The border agreement with the Republic of Montenegro has been signed and ratified and there is no return, except to send the agreement on the constitutionality review.

We cannot lose our other and now, unfortunately, the only exit to the sea in Neum, although everything is going in that direction. The theory of “green transfer” that should go from Sarajevo, and end in Neum while passing through Stolac, unfortunately, seems good to some people who do not like our country and therefore they want to isolate Neum “just in case”.

Neum is ours, as well as the right to open sea or access to international waters. All arguments are on our side, both historical and legal.

Croatia is directly violating our sovereignty and not respecting us as a state, which has been shown by the attitudes of its officials in the last few days.

In order to build anything in the Malostonski bay, it is necessary to make ratification of the Border Agreement that was signed by Alija Izetbegovic and Franjo Tudjman in Sarajevo on July 30, 1999, which is in force, but which the Parliament of the Republic of Croatia consistently refused to ratify.

“Bridge Kopno – Peljesac” cannot be built until the exact border is established, since there is a danger that its current course could cross the territorial waters of the state of BiH and cannot be constructed because Croatia would violate the provisions of the UN Convention, namely Article 7 and 47, with it, because it would restrict the sovereign approach of the state of BiH to the open sea by withdrawing straight lines.

The allegations that the state of BiH does not have an official stand regarding this issue are false, our position is very clear, we are requesting regulation of border issues in details, both on land and the sea, and we are demanding the suspension of the construction of the aforementioned bridge until further notice or until it is determined whether it crosses the Bosnian sea or not.

We have to preserve our Neum and our only exit to open sea for future generations. We must not be short-sighted and accept that our only argument is that we will not be constructing a port in the near future or that the current government was unable to connect Neum with the internal part of the state.

There are no excuses, it is time for them to start respecting us as a state because we are in the region for the longest period of time, and Croatia was ruled by Hungary and Austria when we had our own state.

(Source: akos.ba)


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