Press release

Foreign Secretary welcomes Bosnian President Izetbegovic

Foreign Secretary urges Bosnia and Herzegovina to implement Sejdic-Finci judgement and join her neighbours in making progress towards EU.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government

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The Foreign Secretary William Hague met HE Bakir Izetbegovic, a member of the tri-partite Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) at the FCO on 29 October.

The Foreign Secretary welcomed Mr Izetbegovic to the World Islamic Economic Forum taking place in London. He welcomed the improved relationship between Bosnia and Herzegovina and her neighbours, and congratulated Mr Izetbegovic on Bosnia and Herzegovina’s qualification for the World Cup in Brazil. Both expressed a hope that this success can be emulated in Bosnia’s EU progress.

Speaking after the meeting, the Foreign Secretary said:

In my meeting with Mr Izetbegovic, I stressed the strength of the UK’s support for Bosnia’s EU and NATO aspirations, and encouraged all Bosnian leaders to work to make this a reality.

In particular, I expressed my deep concern at the lack of agreement on implementing the European Court of Human Right’s ruling on Sejdic Finci.

This hurts Bosnia’s progress towards EU and prevents her Stabilisation and Association Agreement with the EU coming into force, and lets down the people of Bosnia-Herzegovina.

In the UK we are concerned that without genuine progress soon, Bosnia and Herzegovina risks being left behind as other countries in the region move towards EU membership. So we urge all Bosnia’s leaders to overcome their differences and reach agreement on Sejdic Finci.

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Published 30 October 2013