How Former HR Ashdown spoke about BiH: Change of Generation on Power is the only way to preserve Peace

BiH needs fresh faces on the political scene and the change of generation on power is the only way to preserve the peace, said Paddy Ashdown, the former High Representative in BiH.

Ashdown is remembered in BiH as the most active HR. In the period from 2002 to 2006 when he performed this function, he imposed even 430 decisions through the Bonn powers, and he even fired 60 officials of the RS in one day. At one time, he was the leader of the Liberal democrats in the UK. Today, he is retired and often appears in the media to support his party.

“When it comes to the constant announcements of the referendum on the secession of the RS, everyone in this country and in the Balkans who want something like that should know that a referendum in BiH will not lead to a better situation, but worse. Dodik knows that the referendum is leading to the disintegration of BiH. However, that would be contrary to the Dayton Peace Agreement and would constitute a threat for peace in BiH. It would also prevent the only future for BH citizens in which they would live in peace and prosperity, and that is the future in the European Union and NATO,” said Ashdown.

“There is an unwritten rule for countries emerging from war. Sustainable peace can only be achieved if the generation that fought in the war leaves power, and a new generation comes to power. However, this is still not the case in BiH,” said Ashdown.

When asked whether the exit of the UK from the EU will influence BiH, Ashdown noted that this will not affect our country as a candidate for EU membership.

Ashdown added that he is missing BiH since he left the office of the High Representative.

“My wife and I left a part of our hearts in BiH, which has great people. I think I’ll come in BiH after the New Year. All the best to everyone in BiH,” said Ashdown.

The path towards the correction of borders between Serbia and Kosovo is paved with dangers and it gives self-confidence and support to those who want to break BiH, stated one of the former high representatives in BiH, Paddy Ashdown.

He and two other former European envoys Carl Bildt and Christian Schwarz-Schilling signed an open letter that was sent to the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Federica Mogherini, on the topic of proposal on changing the border between Serbia and Kosovo.

Ashdown is convinced that the solution for relations between Serbia and Kosovo cannot be found on the destruction of the fundamental principles of the EU on multi-ethnic communities, and not on, as he calls them, the “mono-ethnic pockets” that would be created in the region of Balkan.

“Mogherini is the one that supports this idea within the EU,” said Ashdown, and the President of Russia Vladimir Putin would have the largest benefit from its realization and then he would apply it to the Ukrainian crisis.

When asked if this letter that was sent to European officials could be considered as dramatic appeal, Ashdown stated: “You can use whichever word you like. This is an important statement – warning to certain people in the Balkans and the EU who chose this path so that they are aware of the facr that it is pawed with danger. ”

“I think that everything was said in the letter. Allegedly, it is not about establishing a precedent, but a territorial exchange, but whoever knows the Balkans, as I think we know it, knows very well that it will give confidence and support to those who want to break down BiH,” stated Ashdown.

He also stated that the “European pool” is in chaos.

“Second, the European Union and Brussels are leading the policy in a way to not use the influence they have. Nobody suggests that we should return to the past times, but the EU has the advantage and more instruments in BiH at its disposal than in any other country in the world. However, they decided not to use them, for some unknown reason. Therefore, the European Union chose less active approach there, which left empty space for others. Putin on one side and Erdogan on the other side are using the opportunity to demonstrate something that I think will have a harmful effect on BiH. Moreover, it will also serve to the purpose of those who want destabilization of BiH, ” said Ashdown.


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