Bosnian Serb Leader Criticises State Judiciary

resizer43The Prime Minister of the Serb-dominated Bosnian entity of Republika Srpska has challenged the legality of the judicial bodies investigating a case that officials say could implicate him of fraud.

Infuriated over the probe which according to several officials could also implicate a number of other Bosnian Serb leaders, Milorad Dodik has accused the state judiciary of acting as political puppets. 
His criticism focuses on the role played by foreign judges and prosecutors that serve in Bosnia’s state level court, claiming that any possible charges against him would come in retaliation for his criticisms against them

“For me, the Court and Prosecutor’s Office of Bosnia and Herzegovina are places of political execution, illegal political bodies imposed by the High Representative who had no right to do that,” said Dodik.

He stressed that Bosnian Serb politicians will not allow the continuation of foreign experts’ mandates.

Dodik’s criticism came at the same time as Bosnia’s new High Representative, Valentin Inzko, issued his strongest statement to local leaders so far, warning them that he will “not tolerate” continued challenges to Bosnia’s Constitution and obstructions to the country’s EU accession process.

“Honestly, the situation like this cannot be continued any more,” Inzko said in his address at the joint session of both Houses of the Bosnian Parliament on Tuesday.

In his speech, Inzko requested from the Bosnian Parliament to prolong the mandate of foreign judges, prosecutors and other experts, who were hired to work in state judicial bodies as a part of the ongoing judicial reform.

Over the past few months, the Bosnian State Investigation and Protection Agency has been collecting material which, according to different officials, imply a number of Bosnian Serb leaders in being possibly involved in suspected of misuse of office, fraud and maybe even money laundering. Charges are related to several biggest development and reconstruction projects conducted in Republika Srpska over the past couple of years.

This request, as well as media articles which claim that the State Prosecutor has or will confirm the official investigation against Dodik and several other Bosnian Serb officials, have angered Dodik.

Dodik stressed that he has not been officially informed that any judicial process has opened against him.

Dodik has been accusing foreign judges of plotting against him and the rest of Bosnian Serb leadership, in order to remove key obstacles for further centralization of the country.

Other officials and media have also criticising foreign judges and prosecutors for being ”incompetent” as they have not secured a single conviction in a high profile case yet.

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