The US president apparently sent his greetings to Bosnian Serb President Milorad Dodik on a Muslim holiday he does not celebrate
US President Joe Biden congratulated Bosnian Serb President Milorad Dodik on a boycott by his people. Arguing that only the Muslim population of Bosnia and Herzegovina celebrates Statehood Day, Dodik accused Biden of trying to humiliate his people.
Speaking at a press conference in Belgrade, Dodik accused Biden of stoking division within Bosnia and Herzegovina by sending greetings to the country ahead of Statehood Day on November 25.
“I don’t know what I would call it and all US Embassy employees know that November 25 is not a public holiday in Bosnia and Herzegovina,” he added. he said, according to local media. Dodik added that he viewed Biden’s message as an attempt to humiliate Bosnian Serbs, as only Bosnian Muslims celebrate the day.
Bosnia and Herzegovina, often abbreviated as BiH, is made up of two entities: the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Republika Srpska. The first is more than two-thirds Bosnian Muslim, with Croats representing 20% of the population and Serbs a minority at 2.5%. The latter is more than 82% Serbian.
Power in the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina is shared by one representative from each ethnic group, while Dodik was elected president of Republika Srpska earlier this month.
Addressed to the three leaders of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Biden’s letter called on the leaders of Bosnia and Herzegovina to “put aside their differences and work to build a better future”. The letter urged them to crack down on corruption and align themselves with “the Euro-Atlantic community of nations”, N1, a Balkan news agency, reported.
Statehood Day marks the decision of the Bosnian National Anti-Fascist Council (ZAVNOBiH) in 1943 to declare BiH a future federal unit within the Socialist Federation of Yugoslavia. It became the national holiday in modern Bosnia and Herzegovina when laws passed from the former federal state under the US-brokered Dayton Agreement, although Republika Srpska and Serbian leaders in within the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina have never recognized the occasion.
“27 years since the end of the [1992-1995] the war is long enough for the American representatives in Bosnia and Herzegovina to learn of it and finally inform their government and the service which deals with the sending of congratulations on behalf of the American President”, Dodik said at Thursday’s press conference.
You can share this story on social media: