Wednesday, October 15, 2008


SARAJEVO, Bosnia (October 15,2008) - The European Union High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy Javier Solana said in an interview for the Bosnian daily Dnevni List yesterday that the European Union will step up its engagement in Bosnia.

DNEVNI LIST: The EU Ministers of Defence aggree that EUFOR military mission is to be transformed into civilian mission.What that "civilian" mission means and when we could expect it?

SOLANA: We are permanently assessing the situation on the ground and we are looking at possible options for our future presence.At this moment,no decision has been taken.Deauville was an informal meeting,where we had a very good discussion with the EU Defence Ministers on the issue.This process will continue in the coming weeks.We will adapt our engagement to the requirements.

DNEVNI LIST: By Mr Solana opinion,is Bosnia stable,sustainable country because the transformation (leaving) of military mission could mean something like that?

SOLANA: Despite the challenging political environment in Bosnia,the security situation remains calm and stable.Any decision on EUFOR will be taken on the basis of real needs,the security situation and in the context of wider political developments.

DNEVNI LIST: After EUFOR (military mission),civilian mission will also leave soon or after.Does EU have "exit strategy" and what are the main points that EU has to initiate and that Bosnia has to do itself?

SOLANA: The EU remains fully committed to Bosnia and we will continue to be engaged in Bosnia.The EU is currently looking for ways of stepping up our engagement for Bosnia's EU perspective.The signature of the Stabilisation and Association Agreement is a clear manifestation of this.Transition of the Office of the International Community's High Representative in Bosnia (OHR) to a reinforced EU Special Representative will also underline this EU engagement.No decisions have been taken on the future of our two operations/missions.The ministers will continue to discuss how best the EU can continue to be engaged in Bosnia.

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