The United Kingdom welcomes Bosnia and Herzegovina’s commitment to promote and protect human rights, and commends the decision to abolish the death penalty in Republika Srpska. We welcome Bosnia and Herzegovina’s progress tackling conflict related sexual violence, in particular its work on de-stigmatisation and rehousing displaced persons in permanent accommodation. We also welcome the celebration of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s first Pride march in September.
However, we are concerned about political disenfranchisement, the slowdown of judicial processing of war crimes, and the potential erosion of the rights to freedom of expression, peaceful assembly and association.
We recommend that Bosnia and Herzegovina:
1) Adopt electoral law amendments to ensure the political participation of all citizens at all levels of governance, regardless of ethnic origin, in line with the European Court of Human Rights and domestic court judgments, including allowing elections in Mostar.
2) Ensure survivors of conflict have access to justice by adopting and implementing a National War Crimes Processing Strategy and by meeting the needs of the most vulnerable displaced persons and refugees.
3) Ensure humane and lawful conditions of detention and accommodation of migrants, including by implementing appropriate procedures, oversight mechanisms and effective coordination within government, especially to prevent the trafficking and abuse of women and girls.