The Minister of Defense of Bosnia and Herzegovina Zukan Helez, together with the Deputy Minister of Defense of BiH Aleksandar Goganović, received today the Minister of Defense of the Republic of Slovenia H.E. Marjan Šarec.
The delegations of both ministries included the ambassador of the Republic of Slovenia to Bosnia and Herzegovina, H.E. Damjan Sedar, Assistant Minister of Defense of Bosnia and Herzegovina for International Cooperation Zoran Šajinović, General Director of the Directorate for Defense Policy of the Ministry of Defense of the Republic of Slovenia Roland Žel, Advisor to the Slovenian Minister of Defense Major General Dobran Bođić, Inspector General of the Ministry of Defense of Bosnia and Herzegovina Brigadier General Mirsad Ahmić and other colleagues.
The meeting discussed the development of bilateral military cooperation, within which 16 joint activities are being implemented this year, as well as modalities for the implementation of Slovenian assistance in the form of a donation of special vehicles for the military police of the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina, within the framework of the NATO initiative to build the defense capacities of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The interlocutors exchanged views on the security situation in Europe and the world and highlighted the importance of the EUFOR mission in Bosnia and Herzegovina for the peace and stability of the entire region, as well as the role of Slovenian soldiers in that mission.
Both sides emphasized mutual assistance in situations of natural disasters, such as the floods in Bosnia and Herzegovina in 2014, when members of the Slovenian Army came to help in the recovery of the consequences in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the floods in Slovenia this summer, when the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina sent an engineering unit to help.
“In such circumstances, we can always rely on each other. “Slovenia is one of the biggest proponents of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s membership in Euro-Atlantic integration, and I am glad that we have Slovenia’s help on that path as well,” said Minister Helez.
Minister Šarec said that he was satisfied with the progress achieved with the help of funds allocated through the European Peace Aid Instrument, when aid measures for demining and strengthening the capacities of the Armed Forces of BiH were approved.
“Slovenia has taken over the management of the project to strengthen the capacities of the military police of the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina. In connection with this, we will also implement development projects of first aid and the development of safe driving in the area of the location of the individual unit of the military police of the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
“We are implementing development projects in several municipalities in BiH, also with the aim of better preparing local communities for successful participation in European and other international projects,” said the Minister of Defense of Slovenia.
BiH Deputy Defense Minister Goganović thanked the guests from Slovenia for their support of BiH’s path to EU membership. He pointed out that Bosnia and Herzegovina will cultivate cooperation with NATO, and regarding security challenges in Europe and the world, he stated that Bosnia and Herzegovina will always advocate for de-escalation and peace.