On February 28, President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker visited Bosnia and Herzegovina as part of his tour of the Western Balkans, countries-candidates for membership in the European Union. During his stay in Sarajevo, he said that the potential time for the country’s entry to the EU is 2025. He added that this could happen only if all states exist, but did not name them.
However, at present, the domestic political situation in the Federation doesn’t bring about the accession into the European Union. In recent months, Bosnia and Herzegovina has been marked by high level of popular discontent, manifestations of which were regular protests of certain social groups. Veterans demand from the authorities the introduction of a new law regulating the system of payment of benefits, because the current system allows for numerous violations and the details of receiving financial payments to other types of taxpayers in the event of forging documents. The authorities have been attempting to resolve tension since July last year by promising to begin working on a new law on veterans, but still no work was done. It must be noted that on February 28 they held the largest protest action, which was aimed on blocking the primary roads on the land of the country.
Active participants in the protest activities are industry workers who demanding payment of detained salaries and pension payments. It’s necessary to note the constant growth of arrears against the background of the crisis and the adverse financial situation. The most frequent method of demonstration is blockading highways and streets, as well as pickets in front of government buildings. The most active are the employees of the concern Elektroprivreda RS, RMK Zenica, Alumina and Energoinvest RS.
Participants in the protest actions are also pensioners, who demanding pensions increase and abolition of pension contributions for privileged groups of citizens, in particular, military personnel. Since a few thousand people took part in the protests, the authorities of the country under stress accepted the changes. This measure aroused dissatisfaction on the part of representatives of the police unions, because allowances for former policemen decreased by 25-30%.
Recently, in several areas of the country, medical staff have conducted several short protest strikes. In relation to this, lots of the patients’ receptions to specialists were abolished, and the amount of people in hospitals was limited, except for emergencies.
The majority of the protests are peaceful in nature. However, collisions with the authorities, trying to lift the blockade in the roads, were already recorded. It should be noted that the requirements of veterans have a broad public and media support, because this problem directly affects most the populace of this country. For this reason, it can be noted that the crisis in Bosnia and Herzegovina is systematic.
The depth of this crisis is so serious that Bosnia and Herzegovina by 2025 can not obtain the status of a candidate for EU membership. And Junker understands it. There are two ways to answer this question. First: with such flirting, he attempts to direct the foreign policy vector of the development of this country towards the EU. Using this method, he attempts to wrest this nation from the sphere of interests of the USA, Russia and China.
The second: stimulating the Bosnian political elites to unite efforts to prevent the country from slipping into civil war. After all, in case of a military conflict, it will affect many countries in the region, such as those which are already part of the EU. Brussels will not survive the new influx of refugees from the Balkans.
It turns out that both replies indicate that Junker gives empty promises to be able to protect the European Union from new upheaval. In any case, we can say with assurance that the matter of the nation’s accession into the European Union isn’t seriously considered by the organization’s leadership. And all the statements of the President of the European Commission are nothing more than promises. After all, the top EU countries aren’t ready in the current realities to deal with newcomers’ problems. But, there are a great deal of issues in Bosnia and Herzegovina!