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Bosnia and Herzegovina Government

    Country name:
    conventional long form: none
    conventional short form: Bosnia and Herzegovina
    local long form: none
    local short form: Bosna i Hercegovina

    Data code: BK

    Government type: emerging democracy

    Capital: Sarajevo

    Administrative divisions: there are two first-order administrative divisions—the Muslim/Croat Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Federacija Bosna i Hercegovina) and the Bosnian Serb-led Republika Srpska; note—the status of Brcko in north eastern Bosnia is to be determined by arbitration

    Independence: NA April 1992 (from Yugoslavia)

    National holiday: Republika Srpska—"Republic Day," 9 January; Independence Day, 1 March; Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina—"Republic Day," 25 November

    Constitution: the Dayton Agreement, signed 14 December 1995, included a new constitution now in force

    Legal system: based on civil law system

    Suffrage: 16 years of age, if employed; 18 years of age, universal

    Executive branch:
    chief of state: Chairman of the Presidency Zivko RADISIC (since 13 October 1998—Serb); other members of the three-member rotating (every 8 months) presidency: Ante JELAVIC (since NA September 1998—Croat) and Alija IZETBEGOVIC (since 14 March 1996—Muslim)
    head of government: Cochairman of the Council of Ministers Haris SILAJDZIC (since NA January 1997); Cochairman of the Council of Ministers Suetozar MIHAJLOVIC (since 3 February 1999)
    cabinet: Council of Ministers nominated by the council chairmen
    note: President of the Muslim/Croat Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina: Ivo ANDRIC-LUZANIC (since 1 January 1999); Vice President is Ejup GANIC; note—president and vice president rotate every 3 months; President of the Republika Srpska: Nikola POPLASEN (since 29 October 1998)
    elections: the three-person presidency members (one Muslim, one Croat, one Serb) are elected by popular vote for a four-year term; the president with the most votes becomes the chairman unless he was the incumbent chairman at the time of the election; election last held 12-13 September 1998 (next to be held September 2002); the cochairmen of the Council of Ministers are appointed by the presidency
    election results: percent of vote—Zivko RADISIC with 52% of the Serb vote was elected chairman of the collective presidency for the first 8 months; Ante JELAVIC with 52% of the Croat vote will follow RADISIC in the rotation; Alija IZEBEGOVIC with 87% of the Muslim vote won the highest number of votes in the election but was ineligible to serve consecutive terms as chairman

    Legislative branch: bicameral Parliamentary Assembly or Skupstina consists of the National House of Representatives or Vijece Opcina (42 seats—14 Serb, 14 Croat, and 14 Muslim; members elected by popular vote to serve two-year terms) and the House of Peoples or Vijece Gradanstvo (15 seats—5 Muslim, 5 Croat, 5 Serb; members elected by the Muslim/Croat Federation's House of Representatives and the Republika Srpska's National Assembly to serve two-year terms)
    elections: National House of Representatives—elections last held 12-13 September 1998 (next to be held in the fall 2000); House of Peoples—last held NA (next to be held NA)
    election results: National House of Representatives—percent of vote by party/coalition—NA; seats by party/coalition—KCD 17, HDZ-BiH 6, SDP 4, Sloga 4, SDS 4, SDBIH 2, SRS-RS 2, DNZ 1, NHI 1, RSRS 1; House of Peoples—percent of vote by party/coalition—NA; seats by party/coalition—NA
    note: the Muslim/Croat Federation has a House of Representatives (140 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve NA year terms); elections last held NA (next to be held NA); percent of vote by party—NA; seats by party/coalition—KCD 68, HDZ-BiH 28, SDP 19, SDBIH 6, NHI 4, DNZ 3, DSP 2, BPS 2, HSP 2, SPRS 2, BSP 1, KC 1, BOSS 1, HSS 1; the Republika Srpska has a National Assembly (83 seats; members elected by popular vote to serve NA year terms); elections last held NA (next to be held NA); percent of vote by party—NA; seats by party/coalition—SDS 19, KCD 15, SNS 12, SRS-RS 11, SPRS 10, SNSD 6, RSRS 3, SKRS 2, SDP 2, KKO 1, HDZ-BiH 1, NHI 1

    Judicial branch: Constitutional Court, consists of nine members: four members are selected by the Muslim/Croat Federation's House of Representatives, two members by the Republika Srpska National Assembly, and three non-Bosnian members by the president of the European Court of Human Rights

    Political parties and leaders: Bosnian Party of Rights or BSP [leader NA]; Bosnian Party or BOSS [Mirnes AJANOVIC]; Bosnian Patriotic Party or GPS [Sefer HALILOVIC]; Center Coalition or KC (includes LBO, RS) [leader NA]; Civic Democratic Party or GDS [Ibrahim SPAHIC]; Coalition for King and Fatherland or KKO (Dugravko Prstojevic]; Coalition for a United and Democratic BIH or KCD [Alija IZETBEGOVIC; includes SDA, SBH, GDS, LS]; Croatian Democratic Union of BiH or HDZ-BiH [Ante JELAVIC]; Croatian Party of Rights or HSP [Zdravko HRSTIC]; Croatian Peasants Party of BiH or HSS-BiH [Ilija SIMIC]; Democratic Party for Banja Luka and Krajina [Nikola SPIRIC]; Democratic Party of Pensioners or DSP [Alojz KNEZOVIC]; Democratic Peoples Union or DNZ [Fikret ABDIC]; Liberal Bosniak Organization or LBO [Muhamed FILIPOVIC]; Liberal Party or LS [Rasim KADIC, president]; Muslim-Bosnia Organization or MBO [Salih BUREK]; New Croatian Initiative or NHI [Kresimir ZUBAK]; Party for Bosnia and Herzegovina or SBH [Haris SILAJDZIC]; Party for Democratic Action or SDA [Alija IZETBEGOVIC]; Party of Independent Social Democrats or SNSD [Milorad DODIK]; Radical Party Republika Srpska of RSRS [Miroslav RADOVANOVIC]; Republican Party or RS [Sjepan KJLUJIC]; Serb Coalition for Republika Srpska or SKRS [Predrag LAZEREVIC]; Serb Democratic Party or Serb Lands or SDS [Dragan KALINIC]; Serb National Alliance or SNS [Biljana PLAVSIC]; Serb Radical Party-Republika Srpska or SRS-RS [Nikola POPLASEN]; Sloga or Unity [Biljana PLAVSIC; includes SNS, SPRS, SNSD]; Social Democratic Party BIH or SDP (formerly the Democratic Party of Socialists or DSS) [Zlatko LAGUMDZIJA]; Socialist Party of Republika Srpska or SPRS [Zivko RADISIC]
    note: note—SDP and SDBIH announced a merger in 1999

    Political pressure groups and leaders: NA

    International organization participation: CE (guest), CEI, EBRD, ECE, FAO, G-77, IAEA, IBRD, ICAO, IDA, IFAD, IFC, ILO, IMF, IMO, Intelsat, Interpol, IOC, IOM (observer), ISO, ITU, NAM (guest), OAS (observer), OIC (observer), OPCW, OSCE, UN, UNCTAD, UNESCO, UNIDO, UPU, WHO, WIPO, WMO, WToO

    Diplomatic representation in the US:
    chief of mission: Ambassador Dragan BOZANIC
    chancery: 2109 E Street NW, Washington, DC 20037
    telephone: [1] (202) 337-1500
    FAX: [1] (202) 337-1502
    consulate(s) general: New York

    Diplomatic representation from the US:
    chief of mission: Ambassador Richard D. KAUZLARICH
    embassy: Alipasina 43, 71000 Sarajevo
    mailing address: use street address
    telephone: [387] (71) 445-700
    FAX: [387] (71) 659-722

    Flag description: a wide medium blue vertical band on the fly side with a yellow isosceles triangle abutting the band and the top of the flag; the remainder of the flag is medium blue with seven full five-pointed white stars and two half stars top and bottom along the hypotenuse of the triangle

    Government—note: Until declaring independence in spring 1992, Bosnia and Herzegovina existed as a republic in the former Yugoslavia. Bosnia was partitioned by fighting during 1992-95 and governed by competing ethnic factions. Bosnia's current governing structures were created by the Dayton Agreement, the 1995 peace agreement which was officially signed in Paris on 14 December 1995 by then Bosnian President IZETBEGOVIC, Croatian President TUDJMAN, and then Serbian President MILOSEVIC. This agreement retained Bosnia's exterior border and created a joint multi-ethnic and democratic government. This national government—based on proportional representation similar to that which existed in the former socialist regime—is charged with conducting foreign, economic, and fiscal policy. The Dayton Agreement also recognized a second tier of government, comprised of two entities—a joint Muslim/Croat Federation and the Bosnian Serb Republika Srpska (RS)—each presiding over roughly one-half the territory. The Federation and RS governments are charged with overseeing internal functions.

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Revised 1-Mar-99
Copyright © 1999 Photius Coutsoukis (all rights reserved)