OHR’s Statement at the International Agencies’ Joint Press Conference in Banja Luka

The Federation House of
Representatives is meeting today to discuss a temporary budget for the first
three months of the year.

Earlier, on 26 December, Muhamed
Ibrahimovic, speaker of the Federation House Representatives, had written to the
High Representative asking him to use his powers to impose a Decision on
Temporary Financing for the period January-March 2007 that was adopted by the
Federation Government on 24 December.

As acting High Representative, Ambassador
Lawrence E. Butler yesterday wrote to both Mr Ibrahimovic and Spomenka Micic,
deputy speaker of the Federation House of Peoples, stating that: “The High
Representative’s position on such matters has consistently been not to intervene
in problem-solving where solutions are the political, legal and moral
responsibility of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s elected leaders and/or local

Ambassador Butler urged them to turn to
the leadership of the political parties represented in the Parliament and/or
cantonal assemblies to make clear to them when they must finalise the
establishment of both houses of the Federation Parliament in order to prevent
the crisis that Mr Ibrahimovic referred to in his letter.

“The power to resolve this blockage lies
firmly in your and their hands,” Ambassador Butler concluded.