World Bulletin / News Desk
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has not only divided opinion in the Middle-East, but also reflects upon existing divisions in Europe's troubled Balkans region.
Republika Srpska President Milorad Dodik told Jerusalem Post writer Michael Freund that his autonomous federation has been put under immense pressure by the Muslim and Croat-led Federation of Bosnia & Herzegovina to support the UN membership of the Palestinian Authority.
The bi-zonal federal state of Bosnia and Herzegovina has been in disagreement regarding Palestinian membership in the UN, with the ethnic Serb-led Republika Srpska government opting to block the countries support for the Palestinian cause in the international arena.
Bosnia and Herzegovina has therefore been unable to reach a consensus among Serb, Croat and Muslim community representatives on its policy on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, with Republika Srpska on a number of occassions ruling in favor of Israeli interests.
“We faced very heavy and even difficult pressure to support the Palestinian move,” Dodik told the Jerusalem Post. “Nonetheless, we did not hesitate to adopt a pro-Israel position,” he said, adding that he was pround of Republika Srpska's stance.
Last week, President Dodic joined Israel's Modi’in mayor Haim Bibas to commemorate 700,000 Serbs, Jews and Roma killed in the Jasenovac massacre during World War II along the Bosnia-Croat border, in which a Serbian Orthodox bishop and Belgrade Chief Rabbi Isaak Asiel read prayers for the slain.
A new Jewish cultural center is also set to be opened in the capital Banja Luka next week.
Bosnia and Herzegovina was split into two separate zones after the 1995 Dayton agreement ended three years of bitter civil war which left thousands of people dead. The country has since maintained an unsteady peace, with fluctuating tensions occassionally leading to sporadic clashes between Muslim Bosniaks and Serbs.Last Mod: 05 Mayıs 2014, 15:20