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Balkan Legal News

The following media round up on international, legal and foreign policy issues from around the Balkans for the period from 10 December to 16 December 2021. Guernica 37 will provide weekly media updates with a focus on Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Montenegro, North Macedonia and Serbia . Should you wish to contribute or submit a media summary, opinion piece or blog, please send to Ned Vucijak at for consideration.

Bosnia and Herzegovina – 10 December 2021

Dusko Tomic, defence lawyer for Stevo Bokaric, former member of the State Security Service from Bijeljina, confirmed that the Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina had terminated the custody measure for all the Bijeljina crime suspects and imposed prohibitive measures instead, meaning regular reports to the police station. The full article can be found here.

Bosnia and Herzegovina – 10 December 2021

Former Bosnian Serb Army soldier Bosko Uncanin pleaded not guilty, at the Bosnian state court in Sarajevo, to involvement in the shooting of at least 78 civilians in the Kljuc area during the Bosnian war in 1992. The full article can be found here.

Bosnia and Herzegovina – 11 December 2021

The Bosnian Serb entity assembly voted yes on a set of provisions that would see the regional government opt-out of national institutions despite the threat of new sanctions.

Despite this, the ruling coalition led by Dodik's SNSD had enough votes to approve the proposals that included drafting new entity-level laws that would allow the Bosnian Serb region to withdraw from the Bosnian army, security services, tax system, and judiciary.

The US has already imposed a travel ban and assets freeze on Dodik, while both American and German officials have recently threatened more sanctions if Bosnian Serbs further weaken Bosnia’s central institutions. The full article can be found here.

Serbia – 14 December 2021

Serbia has moved a step closer to joining the European Union after opening talks on a series of environmental policies. However, the EU has warned progress on its path to EU membership still depends on Serbia normalising relations with Kosovo. The full article can be found here.

Albania – 14 December 2021

Former Environment Minister Lefter Koka was arrested on corruption charges related to waste incinerator contracts, drawing praise from the US ambassador to Tirana, who said it shows Albania's judicial reform is getting results. The full article can be found here.

Kosovo – 16 December 2021

A witness at the trial for the killing of Kosovo Serb political party leader Oliver Ivanovic told Pristina Basic Court that he does not want to name the members of organised criminal groups that operate in the Serb-dominated north of Kosovo, which Ivanovic warned about before he was killed in 2018. The full article can be found here.

Kosovo – 15 December 2021

The Supreme Court confirmed the Judicial Council’s decision to suspend Judge Florije Zatriqi, considering that “an investigation had been launched against her for a disciplinary violation by a competent authority and the alleged disciplinary violation is quite serious, and in the end this measure of suspension enables the development of an impartial and effective investigation of the disciplinary responsibility of the complainant-judge Florije Zatriqi”. The full article can be found here.

Bosnia and Herzegovina – 16 December 2021

Police arrested eight former Bosnian Serb soldiers and policemen suspected of involvement in war crimes in the village of Zijemlje near Nevesinje in 1992, where almost 100 Bosniaks were killed. The full article can be found here.


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