Real Peace Still Eludes Bosnia, Cardinal Puljic Says

Criticizes Implementation of Dayton Agreement

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SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina, DEC. 11, 2001 ( Cardinal Vinko Puljic severely criticized the lack of implementation of the Bosnia peace agreements signed six years ago in the United States.

«The Dayton agreement stopped the war but has not created the premises for real peace,» the archbishop of Sarajevo said over Vatican Radio.

«People have been unable to return to their homes, to recover their property and, in particular, there is no strategy to form a juridical state,» he explained.

«It seems that the international community is unable to understand that Bosnia-Herzegovina must have an ethnically balanced democracy,» he added. «No member´s rights may be denied because this creates uncertainty.»

According to Cardinal Puljic, one of the reasons for the existing situation is that «there are too many institutions of the international community working for Bosnia-Herzegovina; often they are not in agreement in seeking solutions to the country´s problems.»

The present administrative system in Bosnia-Herzegovina was articulated «in an office without being adapted to reality,» the cardinal stressed.

«Very often laws have been imposed, creating uncertainty,» he added. «In my opinion, the international community has a mistaken idea of the reality in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and the local politicians have not shown good will in coming to an agreement and creating a healthy state apparatus.»

Cardinal Puljic concluded by asking the international community to help Bosnia-Herzegovina by creating an authentic «state apparatus» which guarantees respect of minorities and governance according to democratic laws.

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