Republika Srpska President comes under Leftist fire
The Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats in the European Parliament is calling for concrete action from the European Commission and Enlargement Commissioner Olivier Varhelyi against Milorad Dodik. Leftist MEPs have sent a letter to European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen expressing their concern about recent events in Bosnia.
President is under fire from the Left
Socialist MEPs have launched an attack on the President of Republika Srpska. They wrote a letter to the relevant members of the European Commission, urging them to take concrete action. In the letter, which was recently forwarded to the both European Commission President and the Enlargement Commissioner, they expressed their concern about the events in Bosnia, mentioning that on 9 January, Serbs in the eastern part of Sarajevo celebrated their own Entity Day. The Leftist MEPs have described this event as illegal and unconstitutional.
We urge @vonderleyen and @OliverVarhelyi to act decisively against further escalation in BiH.
We expect clear condemnation of unconstitutional marches and genocide denials.
High time for sanctions against Dodik and others who erode the unity of BiH.
Read the letter 👇 pic.twitter.com/yfJ8JRQVvx
— S&D Group (@TheProgressives) February 1, 2023
They stressed that the meeting was attended by the son of Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic, Danilo Vucic, and President Dodik issued an award to Russian President Vladimir Putin.
The celebration is just the latest of Milorad Dodik’s activities, which have recently been sanctioned by the United States, leftist MEPs say. The punitive measures include the freezing of any US assets held by the Bosnian Serb politician.
“The threat to the unity of Bosnia and Herzegovina by Milorad Dodik and his allies cannot continue. Following the events of 9 January, we expect decisive action from the Commission, including Enlargement Commissioner Oliver Varhelyi,” the European Social Democrats wrote in their letter.
The leftist politicians also criticised the European Commission for not condemning the event.
EP resolution calls for sanctions against Dodik
Before sending the letter, the European Parliament had also called for sanctions against Milorad Dodik. The resolution, adopted on 18 January, calls for punitive measures against those who destabilise Bosnia or threaten the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the country, including Milorad Dodik. EP resolutions are of symbolic importance, they are not legally binding on either the European institutions or on the member states of the European Union.
Dodik: Sanctions a sign of weakness
Milorad Dodik expressed his incomprehension of the decision. He responded to the call for sanctions against him by saying that punitive measures do not represent superiority, but weakness. At the same time, the Bosnian Serb leader added that no one had lost their life because of the policy he leads, and it did not endanger EU integration.
“No one questioned the country’s path to Europe, and we didn’t question its territorial integrity, either. This is why I am very interested in what inspired the representatives to take such a measure,” said Dodik after the resolution.
He noted that he always makes decisions freely and according to his own conscience and respects all legal acts of the Republic of Serbia and of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
“If they’re going to punish me for that, then let them. But then we should also let them say that I was punished, because I was thinking with my own head, respected the Constitution and was guided by national interests,” said Milorad Dodik.
As previously reported by V4NA , the president of Republika Srpska spoke about the attacks against him and the Russia-Ukraine conflict in a television interview recorded a few days after the ceremony. He drew attention to the fact that Europe has not sufficiently assessed its place and role, and is also the most susceptible to anything happening on the global level because it depends on expensive energy sources, is losing jobs, and cannot cope with the ‘”big players”.
The politician asked, and swiftly answered, the question of what the country can expect from the West at all. In his view, the West has become an increasingly corrupt and unfair third party. And the diplomats keep going to them in order to liquidate the Republic of Bosnian Serbs and establish one uniform Bosnia-Herzegovina.
In an interview with the RTRS channel, Dodik stressed that he has already been to the European Parliament, he has seen the kind of people sitting there. There are people who don’t bathe for five months, there are all kinds of people there, he said, adding that
“this is their problem. They can do whatever they want. They can walk around naked for all I care,” the Serbian politician said, lashing out at MEPs.
Europe is in a miserable situation: It has lost its power, it has no leadership and it has no concept, the Serb leader said, as quoted by Tanjug, Serbia’s state news agency.