Saturday, September 8, 2007


SKOPJE, Macedonia (September 8, 2007) - Political relations between Macedonia and Bosnia are at the highest level, but economic exchange does not meet the potentials of both countries, assessed Macedonian and Bosnian Foreign Ministers Antonio Milososki and Sven Alkalaj after their meeting in Skopje.

"We agreed on supporting the organization of several meetings and opportunities for promotion of countries' economies. We also stressed the significance of the CEFTA treaty, said the Macedonian Foreign Minister Antonio Milososki.

Interlocutors agreed on the development of a joint protocol of the two ministries on cooperation regarding experience exchange on EU and NATO integration.

The Bosnian Foreign Affairs Minister Sven Alkalaj stated that potential for economic cooperation between the two countries is larger than its prior use.

"There are numerous bilateral agreements and a lot of initialed ones, which await signing", stressed Alkalaj.

According to him, Bosnia could use Macedonia's experiences on the path towards EU and NATO.

"We highly appreciate the progress of Macedonia as a country-candidate for EU membership and soon-to-be NATO member", emphasized Minister Alkalaj.

Moreover, he expressed satisfaction from the treatment of the Bosniak minority in Macedonia.

Asked about his expectations for a positive European Commission report, Macedonian Foreign Minister Milososki said that it would include remarks and critique, but progress would be noted in a number of areas.

"I believe that Macedonia will be positively assessed in the EC report regarding its economic and police reforms, combat against corruption and organized crime, increase of tax revenues and customs efficiency, and harmonization of the Macedonian legislation with the EU Acquis. This report will evaluate this year's reforms, representing the basis for our essential Euro-Atlantic integration in 2008, i.e. beginning of EU accession talks and acquiring an invitation for NATO membership", underlined FM Milososki.

Bosnian Foreign Minister Alkalaj also met with Macedonian President Branko Crvenkovski, Prime Minister Nikola Gruevski and Parliament Speaker Ljubisa Georgievski.The talks focused on promotion of bilateral ties, in particular the economic co-operation. They also discussed the current situation in the region and the Kosovo status process.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (September 8, 2007) - Following the address of the international community's high representative and EU special representative in Bosnia, Miroslav Lajcak,to the Bosnian Parliament, Head of the European Union Police Mission in Bosnia (EUPM) Brigadier General Vincenzo Coppola expressed his strongest support to the initiatives currently undertaken by Lajcak.

In his speech, the Lajcak urged Bosnia to reach an agreement on police reform, the main pre-requisite for signing a Stabilisation and Association Agreement with the EU.

“It is clear that this country needs a police reform as the current system can be considerably improved.This will remain one of our top priorities,” Coppola said.

Our goal is to raise the professional standards of the Bosnian police agencies so as to ensure that the best possible police practises are being applied, resulting in a better security situation in the country,” he went on.

The international community's high representative and EU special representative in Bosnia, Miroslav Lajcak will be travelling to Brussels on 10 September to take stock of the reform process with EU high representative Javier Solana.


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (September 8, 2007) - Mirza Lisinovic,Assistant Director and Head of the Internal Control Unit of the Bosnian State Investigation and Protection Agency (SIPA) briefed a group of journalists about the competences and future priorities of the agency.

Editors and journalists of the Bosnian media are currently attending an investigative journalism programme entitled ‘Analytical reporting - Justice and Security in Bosnia’ and organised by Net Novinar and the Centre for Investigative Journalism. The programme aims to improve the way the media report about the reform process in the judiciary and security sectors.

“We are determined to improving our communication with the media in order to better promote the work of SIPA,” said Lisinovic.

In his presentation about the internal structure, main tasks and competences of SIPA, Lisinovic stressed that the current priorities of the agency are the fight against organized crime and money laundering on the one hand, and the arrest of war criminals on the other. Besides, SIPA also currently focuses on the further development of its Special Support Unit (SSU).

“In addition, we are very keen to continue to promote the Krimolovci hotline, which is key to foster cooperation between police and citizens, such as to enhance the efficiency of police investigations,” Lisinovic went on.

“One of our priorities is also to strengthen our Public Relations Department, as media are very important partners to both inform the public about our achievements, but also to encourage people’s trust in the work of police agencies,” Lisinovic concluded.