Many states in Europe are concerned about both the violation of their sovereignty and the economic problems brought about by the energy supply problem. These countries are trying to develop common policies, especially within the European Union (EU), to address their concerns. Therefore, the EU integration process has accelerated and contacts with the states at the application stage have been increased. In this process, states are trying to get rid of the negative effects of interdependence brought about by globalization; In order to eliminate security concerns, it increased its military expenditures against Russia and turned to various cooperations. Bosnia and Herzegovina has also been taking steps to strengthen its defense for a while.
Undoubtedly, Bosnia and Herzegovina is trying to become stronger militarily; It does not ignore diplomacy. The country, which tries to strengthen its diplomatic relations with the powerful actors in the region, tries to develop its bilateral relations, especially with Germany. The strengthening of Bosnia and Herzegovina in the region is also in the interests of Germany.
In this context, Bosnia and Herzegovina has taken initiatives to strengthen its armed forces. It is likely that the support given by Berlin to Sarajevo on this issue will be seen more concretely in the future. However, attempts to strengthen the Army of Bosnia and Herzegovina are not limited to Germany’s support. It is possible to talk about a Sarajevo administration that tends to cooperate with the regional and global allies. In addition to this, Bosnia and Herzegovina, which took steps in the national sense, approved a draft budget on the subject. At this point, it should be stated that similar tendencies can be developed by other Balkan states.
Being aware of the concerns of the regional states, the EU has accelerated its efforts to ensure peace and stability in the region in order to eliminate these concerns. Therefore, the influence of the EU in the Balkans is increasing day by day. The Sarajevo administration also wishes to turn this effect into an opportunity. As a matter of fact, Bosnia and Herzegovina emphasizes that its priority, especially in the context of its foreign and security policy, is Euro-Atlantic integration.
In fact, the continuation of the Russia-Ukraine War and the intensification of contacts between China and Russia trigger the reservations of the regional capitals at the point of security. Bosnia and Herzegovina is strengthening both its military forces and its contacts with the EU to address these concerns.
In this context, the Chairman of the Council of Ministers of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Borjana Krišto, met with the Commander of the EU Peace Force (EUFOR) in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Major General Helmut Habermayer, and discussed the possibilities of cooperation.. This meeting is very important for Bosnia and Herzegovina. Because while the Sarajevo administration has shown to the international public that it is open to consensus on key issues; He also drew attention to the importance of military partnerships. However, Bosnia and Herzegovina’s steps to address its security concerns are not limited to this.
Bosnia and Herzegovina, which pays attention to both democratic and economic integration in the European integration process, has signed the Rule Book on the operation of the National/Joint Contact Point with the European Police Organization (EUROPOL) in terms of security. The return of this step will not only be beneficial in terms of security; it will also accelerate the country’s integration with Europe. Because when the integration policies of the EU are considered, the importance of EUROPOL is obvious.
On the other hand, Bosnia and Herzegovina Security Minister Nenad Nešić also visited Brussels on 22 March 2023. It is expected that these contacts of Nešić, who met with the senior officials of the EU, will accelerate the EU integration process. As a matter of fact, Nešić met with the European Union Neighborhood and Enlargement Commissioner Oliver Varhelyi and emphasized that it is important for Bosnia and Herzegovina to accelerate the European path for the security and stability of the region..
Based on all this information, it can be stated that both regional and global actors have given various reactions to the changes in the international system. Especially, the increasing security problems recently paved the way for new collaborations. In this context, it is known that the integration process of the EU has accelerated. Bosnia and Herzegovina is trying to turn this process into an advantage in terms of both strengthening its army and accelerating EU membership.
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