Palmer and Eichorst: There is no much Time for Amendments to the BiH Constitution and Election Law

The representative of the United States (U.S.) Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Matthew Palmer, and the director of the European External Action Service, Angelina Eichorst, have begun negotiations with officials in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) on changes to the BiH Election Law.

The talks officially began with members of the Collegium of the Parliamentary Assembly of BiH (PABiH) and continued with representatives and party presidents. International representatives say that time is running out and that the solution must be the result of a domestic compromise.

Palmer and Eichorst are holding the last and longest meeting with the leaders of the Party of Democratic Action (SDA), Bakir Izetbegovic, and the Croatian Democratic Union (HDZ) of BiH, Dragan Covic. Earlier, the presidency of the opposition parties from Republika Srpska (RS) left the building of the European Union (EU) Delegation in Sarajevo, and before them the ruling parties from that entity.

They again have the same messages – changes to the BiH Election Law are needed, which will include certain changes to the BiH Constitution. They noted that all parliamentary parties in BiH must be involved in this process, and that time is running out, given that the country is in an election year. Amendments to the law must be made at least six months before the election. They drew attention to the fact that negotiations are underway on “activating a credible package”, as they said, “for the integrity of the election process”.

“We are here to support talks that would go in the direction of finding a solution in terms of amending the BiH Constitution and Election Law when it comes to amending all discriminatory provisions contained in the Election Law that will improve the integrity of the overall election process,” Eichorst stated.

“There is very little time left to reach an agreement. It is very important that the elections are held as planned, in the fall,” Palmer stressed.

The leader of HDZ BiH, Dragan Covic, addressed earlier yesterday after the meeting in the PABiH and said that constitutivity is important for him and that it must be visible at all levels in BiH and that he will not give up his principles.

SNSD leader Milorad Dodik told that he would support everything related to the constitutiveness of Serbs in the Federation of BiH (FBiH).

There was talk again about a package for direct or indirect election of a member of the Presidency of BiH and about the House of People, but without a concrete solution. What is interesting is that the opposition in RS turned out to be more optimistic than the leaders of the ruling parties in RS. They said that they saw a change and that they were offered a package of questions on which they must find a common position in the upcoming days. They said that the questions refer to the elections themselves, their transparency, the issues of the electorate, as well as the counting of votes.

Source: BHRT

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