MOSCOW, July 23. /TASS/. Russia is indignant at the actions of United Nations High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina Valentin Inzko, who amended the country’s criminal code with provisions to ban the denial of the 1995 Srebrenica genocide, Russian Foreign Ministry Spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said on Friday
"We profoundly resent the flagrant and absolutely unacceptable interference of outgoing High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina Valentin Inzko into the domestic affairs of this sovereign and independent European state," she said. "His actions are nothing but a blatant stretch of authority under the General Framework (Dayton) Agreement for Peace in Bosnia and Herzegovina of 1995 and a direct violation of the course towards delegating all responsibilities to the Bosnian side that was endorsed by the Peace Implementation Council’s Steering Board. Valentin Inzko’s illegal actions run counter to his Dayton mandate of an unbiased and objective mediator."
As a peace agreement guarantor and a Steering Board member, Russia condemns Inzko’s actions as a "flagrant infringement upon Bosnia-Herzegovina’s sovereignty, its constitutional system and the competences of its authorities, Zakharova noted. "We are convinced that amendments to the legislation in a democratic and law-abiding state, and Bosnia-Herzegovina, undoubtedly, is such a state, are made via a parliament-endorsed procedure but never at a stroke of the pen of a foreign citizen," she stressed.
Inzko’s irresponsible activities provoke "a political crisis of an unprecedented scale," she pointed out. "The interethnic dialogue and all the achievements of the post-conflict period are jeopardized. The fair upsurge of indignation, which is already emerging in Bosnia-Herzegovina, is quite understandable."
She noted however that Inzko’s actions can have no legal consequences because "no one and nothing can either play down or replace or ignore" the role of Bosnia-Herzegovina’s Parliamentary Assembly. "The future of Bosnia and Herzegovina is in the hands of its people. But the high representative has discredited himself once and for all," Zakharova stressed.
"This incident clearly proves the justifiability of Russia’s position in favor of scaling down the institute of foreign oversight over Bosnia-Herzegovina, which only creates problems and undermines peace and stability in that country," she added.