Magazine article Europe-East

Eu/bosnia and Herzegovina : Inzko Appointed High Representative

Magazine article Europe-East

Eu/bosnia and Herzegovina : Inzko Appointed High Representative

Article excerpt

The European Union's foreign ministers, on 16 March, formally appointed Austrian diplomat Valentin Inzko as new EU special representative (EUSR) and welcomed his appointment as high representative (HR) for Bosnia and Herzegovina. However, they have yet to decide on the terms of the EU's planned reinforced presence in the country (see page 7).

Concluding weeks of consultations, on 13 March Inzko was officially confirmed in his new post. The Peace Implementation Council (PIC), the international body that overseas Bosnia's peace process, said he would take up his duties on 26 March.

Inzko was designated by the EU member states to take over the post of EUSR in Bosnia and Herzegovina from Miroslav Lajcak, who resigned in January to become Slovakia's foreign minister, on 23 February.

Commenting on his appointment, Inzko told the press that he was grateful for the support received. He said he saw difficult tasks ahead, notably police and judicial reform. As his new job is a double-hatted position (the EUSR also serves as the international high representative to Bosnia and Herzegovina, a post created after the Bosnian war in 1995 to oversee the civilian implementation of the Dayton Peace Agreement), Inzko's candidacy needed to be also endorsed by the United States, Russia, Canada, Japan and Turkey, the non-EU members of the Steering Board of Bosnia's PIC.

In the Council's conclusions, the ministers reconfirmed the EU's "readiness for a transition from the Office of High Representative to increased local ownership, supported by a reinforced European Union presence as soon as conditions are met". …

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