The Bosniak and Croat members of the tripartite Presidency agreed on Tuesday that Bosnia should sue Croatia over the construction of the Peljesac bridge, but the Serb Presidency member said he vetoed it because it would violate Serb national interests.
“Sefik Dzaferovic and Zeljko Komsic voted for the decision to sue Croatia and stop the construction of the Peljesac bridge. The decision is formally adopted by as Serb presidency member I invoked the Serb vital national interest and I plan to explain to the Republika Srpska entity's National Assembly why this is not good,” said Milorad Dodik, who is currently the Presidency Chairman.
Bosnia's tripartite Presidency consists of representatives of each of its three constituent peoples: Bosniaks, Serbs, and Croats. The Bosniak and Croat members are elected in Bosnia's semi-autonomous Federation entity, shared by Bosniaks and Croats, while the Serb member is elected in its other semi-autonomous entity called Republika Srpska, mostly populated by Serbs.
The Presidency Chairman added that his request was to draw a border agreement with Croatia but Komsic and Dzaferovic focussed on the Peljesac bridge.
“There were some issues that aren't as problematic but the key problem is opening an issue between the EU and Croatia and My opinion is that too many subjects would be affected by this and it not in our interest to adopt such a decision,” Dodik concluded.
The Peljesac Bridge, which will be built by the Chinese consortium China Road and Bridge Corporation (CRBC), is intended to connect the Croatian mainland to the Peljesac peninsula.
It aims to bypass the 15-kilometre-long coastal strip around the town of Neum that belongs to Bosnia and Herzegovina and is Bosnia's only access to the Adriatic sea. The bridge aims to improve road traffic links between the Dubrovnik area and the rest of the country by circumventing customs and border controls around Neum.
According to Dodik, the Presidency also discussed the establishment of measures and procedures with Montenegro and Serbia on preventing illegal entrance of people into Bosnia.