Transcript of the International Agencies’ Joint Press Conference

OHR, Mario Brkic

OSCE, Elmira

EUPM, Zinaida Ilaria

EUFOR, Rolf Kurth

NATO, Derek Chappell



High Representative Addresses FBiH Political Clubs

The High Representative will later today meet with politicians representing
the FBiH political party clubs. Their discussions will focus on Police reform
and in particular the crucial upcoming negotiations to be held on Vlasic between
the 24th and 27th April. 

The EC’s Consultative Task Force is due to be in
and Herzegovina
on 19th May to assess
progress on the Feasibility Study Requirements. BiH’s leaders must now reach a
formal agreement on police reform, or be responsible for the delay in BiH’s EU
accession ambitions.

Based on the EU’s three principles that require (1) all legislative and
budgetary competencies be vested at state-level (2) policing is carried out in
functional areas, so as to achieve technically efficient policing and (3) to
remove political interference in operational policing, these negotiations could
provide BiH with a decent system of policing, one which can win the battle
against crime, rather than losing it.

With the EC acknowledgement that
Serbia and
completed their Feasibility study last week it is clear that the priority for
BiH’s neighbours is EU membership, not the destructive politics and alliances of
the past. BiH’s leading political cadre – in both Government and opposition –
now have the opportunity to prove to BiH’s citizens that they too are intent on
this goal and that they are capable of leading BiH into


PDHR Larry Butler to visit Banja Luka, discuss fiscal reform & police

PDHR Larry Butler is in

Banja Luka

today, where he will meet RS Prime Minister Pero
Bukejlovic, RS Finance Minister Svetlana Cenic, RSNA Speaker Dusan Stojicic,
SNSD leader Milorad Dodik and RS President Dragan Cavic.

Talks will cover steps currently underway to ensure that BiH moves forward
with the EU accession process. Among the required steps are furnishing the BiH
Council of Ministers with the ministries, departments and institutional
capability it needs in order to negotiate a Stabilisation and Association
Agreement with the EU. Currently, BiH’s painfully scarce resources are being
wasted by duplicating services and functions at Entity, State and every level.
PDHR Butler will discuss the need for the Fiscal Sustainability Working Group,
appointed by the three Finance Ministers in February, to move forward with its
task of identifying ways in which the bureaucracy can be rationalized and made
to serve BiH citizens more efficiently.

Ambassador Butler will also be speaking to RS politicians about the
negotiations on police reform, based on the Police Reform Commission report. As
you know, the High Representative has begun a process that will bring together
the parties that can secure parliamentary majority for police restructuring.

The European Commission has clearly laid out the parameters for a modernized
police service in BiH which would allow BiH to move forward with the
Stabilisation and Association process. EC conditions are that all legislative
and budgetary competencies must be vested at the state level; police services
must be based on geographical regions drawn up to ensure maximum efficiency; and
political interference in policing in BiH must be eliminated.

The PIC Steering Board on 7 April underlined that these negotiations are
about the structure of policing, not about BiH’s constitutional make-up. The aim
is to provide a decent system of policing in BiH, that can win the battle
against crime.

Last night, Ambassador Butler addressed a meeting of mayors in Brcko, where
he called on municipal leaders to become involved in the countrywide debate over
political and economic reform. He noted that municipal issues are national
issues and national issues are municipal issues, because reforms at the state
level affect the municipalities and can only be implemented efficiently through
the municipalities. You can find copies of this speech on the OHR website.



In order to provide a comprehensive overview of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s
international obligations as well as the current education structure and
competencies, OSCE Mission to BiH has produced the report “Raising
Is BiH Respecting Its International Commitments in the Field of
Education – Questions for the Citizens of BiH”
. The report looks at how
these obligations are being implemented across BiH, and promotes goals ensuring
that all children have access to quality education and respect for the rights of
all children.  

Bosnia and Herzegovina

has signed many international
treaties on education which oblige the state to implement specific education
standards in the country.  These treaties generally promote the same
principles: access, availability, acceptability, effectiveness and official
recognition, non-discrimination, absence of segregation in education and the
obligation to maintain and continue reform.  

This report consists of three sections: “BiH’s international commitments in
the field of education”; “BiH constitutional structure in the field of
education”; and “Does the current education system in BiH respects international

As BiH’s focus moves from the short-term goals set out in the Education
Reform Strategy to longer-term solutions, which can ensure its education system
functions to the benefit of all citizens, now is the appropriate and, in fact,
the essential time to review BiH’s current progress towards implementing its
international obligations in the field of education.

A recent review of the Education Reform Strategy by the international
community points to some of the progress made, and highlights that standards of
quality and access set out in the strategy have not been systematically applied
across the country and that local authorities have still not assumed sufficient
ownership of the reform process. 

With 13 Ministries of Education in BiH, for an estimated population of 3.8
million people, the system remains extremely fragmented. While the state-level
Ministry of Civil Affairs commits BiH as a state to international obligations
such as the Lisbon Recognition Convention, the state ministry does not have the
capacity to ensure these obligations are met or to effectively coordinate
education initiatives and ensure harmony among disparate education initiatives
across the country.

This report does not purport to prescribe particular solutions or even make
recommendations as to how the authorities and citizens of BiH must address these
problems. Rather it seeks to pose some of the questions necessary as a first
step towards formulating those solutions, which must be discussed, debated and
ultimately agreed upon by local authorities, education experts, school
directors, parents, students and other concerned citizens of BiH.

The OSCE anticipates that this report will help to raise debate across BiH
about education reform progress and the effectiveness of education structures.



Commissioner Carty talks to Brcko officials about police

The key principles of the police restructuring, as one of the EU requirements
towards Bosnia and Herzegovina, will be the main topic of the discussions that
the Head of the European Union Police Mission, Commissioner Kevin Carty, will
hold during his official visit to Brcko District today (19 April).

Commissioner Carty will first meet with the Chief of Brcko police, and later
during the day, with the Mayor of Brcko.

The Commissioner will use this opportunity to stress the importance of police
restructuring and the impact that this process will have on the future of this
country and its citizens. He will also reiterate the main aim of the reform
process being about creating professional police service, accountable to the
citizens and effective in fighting crime.

EUPM and OHR’s road shows to continue

The European Union Police Mission (EUPM) and the Office of the High
Representative have been organizing public meetings throughout BiH in order to
explain the main purpose and benefits of the police reform to the citizens of
Bosnia and Herzegovina

This weeks public meetings will be held on 19 April in Derventa, beginning at
18.00 hrs in the RS Army Club; 20 April in Banja Luka, at 18.00 hrs in Banski
Dvor small conference room and finally on 21 April in Brcko, starting at 18.00
hrs in Cultural Centre.

During the last two months EUPM and OHR staff travelled to 25 different
locations in the RS and Federation BiH, and held over 50 meeting where they
spoke to the citizens, the police and other stakeholders about police
restructuring process. It was explained that police reform was solely about
creating a professional police service, accountable to the citizens and
effective in fighting crime.



No statement.



No statement.




NATO HQ Sarajevo Commander stated yesterday that there are indications that
events in the RS Barracks were staged. Have you found any proof so far?  Do
you have any information on the Report of RS Minister of Defence? Is it ready,
because he has to deliver it by tomorrow?


As you know from yesterday’s press conference, a report is being compiled. It
will be given to us tomorrow (on the events of Saturday). We have not received
that report yet. I don’ think it would be wise to comment on the facts of the
case until we have results of the investigation that is carried out by the
competent military authorities.