Office of the High Representative BiH Media Reports

| 4/1/2006

 

Old Media Reports (afternoon)
OHR BiH Media Round-up, 4/1/2006

 

Latest radio news broadcast at 12.00 on January 4

RADIO HERCEG-BOSNA(12,00 hrs)

BH Radio 1 (12,00 hrs)

RTRS  (12,00 hrs)

Floods in BiH

River levels decreasing in USC

Talks continue: No major progress

Const. changes talks continue

River levels in Drvar decreasing

Gas delivery

HDZ Central Board session tomorrow

Const. changes talks continue

Indonesia casualties

TV news broadcast on January 3

RADIO HERCEG-BOSNA(18,00 hrs)

TV PINK  (18,00 hrs)

BHT 1 (19,00 hrs)

Water levels increasing in BiH

News not broadcasted

Floods in Bihac area

World News

 

Floods in Prijedor

First VAT payment in Sarajevo

 

Floods in Mostar

Constitutional talks continued

 

First payment of VAT

 

NTV Hayat  (19,00 hrs)

FTV  (19,30 hrs)

RTRS  (19,30 hrs)

Floods in Mostar

Floods in Drvar

Const. talks continued in Sarajevo

Gas delivery to BiH normalized

Floods in Prijedor

VAT payments started

World News

Floods in Bihac area

Bulldozer did not pass BiH customs

Causevic on VAT

Floods in Mostar

Statements on budget

 

Oslobodjenje

Guaranteed delivery, increased prices by February 1?

Dnevni Avaz

IMF: Budgets have to be decreased by KM 450 million

Dnevni List

Many children in BiH have become ‘invisible’ (UNICEF’s report)

Vecernji List

Half state under water (floods in BiH)

Slobodna Dalmacija

Duvanjsko field like Busko lake (floods in BiH)

Glas Srpske

Differences in prices

Nezavisne Novine

Krajina under water [report on floods in the area of Prijedor, Bihac, Drvar]

Blic

Ghurkas in hunt for Karadzic and Mladic [Report taken from Zagreb weekly Globus]

Vecernje Novosti

Serbia related headlines

 

 

LATEST NEWS OF TODAY

Talks on constitutional reform continue; Covic/Lagumdzija comment on talks; Presidency on agenda

 

RTRS notes that the leaders of the eight political parties from BiH have resumed talks on constitutional changes in Sarajevo, without revealing any detail on possible outcome of the meeting. Reporter stresses this particularly refers to politicians from RS (including Cavic and Simic). Tihic stated: “I am not an optimist we would agree.”  According to reporter, Dragan Covic gave the most concrete statement, saying: “I am of the view following today’s talks, we are aware of the fact there will be Presidency consisted of President and two Vice Presidents. The issue of rotation and election remain to be determined…I believe we are close to reaching an agreement to perform election indirectly, i.e. through Parliamentary Assembly.” Reporter adds that the US Ambassador to BiH was also unclear in his statement, without expressing expectation talks would end today. Reporter stresses Zlatko Lagumdzija found time to make jokes by saying: “The greatest obstacle is that it has been proven once more the ruling coalition cannot agree on what day is today…Some issues have been agreed regarding Presidency…It is obvious we are holding meeting with five snails, not runners.”

BH Radio 1, RHB also reported on the continuation of the talks.

 

 

Political Developments/Reforms

Const. talks continue; parties keep their stances; Tihic: abolish entity’s presidents

 

RTRS by Zorica Rulj - Leaders of eight political parties continued talks on constitutional changes in Sarajevo on Tuesday. Politicians from FBiH continue to advocate for one President while politicians from RS are in favour of rotating tripartite Presidency with one President with 16-months mandate. Mladen Ivanic, PDP Chair said that the agreement would be made if the minimum of mutual interest were accepted. Krstan Simic, SNSD member said that the realistic, sustainable approach is necessary in order to make BiH establishes institutions the way they should be. Dragan Covic, HDZ member said that parties have has not changed their opinion regarding the presidency and that on Wednesday session he would ask for talks on reorganization of middle level of power. Sulejman Tihic, SDA Chair came with the new initiative to discuss along with the presidency, the positions of presidents of entities. Tihic believes that the positions of entities’ presidents should be suspended. Dragan Cavic, SDS Chair, deem Tihic’s initiative as trivial. Branislav Dukic, Chair of Coordination Board of Serb NGOs criticized Tihic’s statement and asked Serb members to leave the negotiations if any pressure or ultimatum is pressed on them. Douglas McElhaney, US Ambassador to BiH welcomed negotiations, saying that improvements were made but there are still many things to make agreement on. RHB - HDZ Spokesperson Miso Relota announces the session of the HDZ Main Board on Thursday in Mostar to discuss constitutional changes. Vice-President of HNZ Mate Bandur stated that agreements on BiH Presidency’s structure are difficult, due to different stances of RS and FBiH Politicians. Bandur stated that RS politicians are insisting on three-member Presidency, where rotations would be on four month, stressing that Croats are advocating for one President and two Vice- Presidents that would make BiH Presidency. NTV HAYAT - After the first part of the talks, Tihic expressed his dissatisfaction. “We have not agreed on a thing…I expect some kind of agreement to be reached, but our stances differ a lot”, said Tihic. SDP Chair Zlatko Lagumdzija said that he expected no agreements to be reached; he believes that some kind of a summary is going to be made in terms of the issue of BiH Presidency and Parliamentary Assembly. On the other hand, the IC representatives are optimistic. “I hope that the talks will progress and that certain decisions are going to be brought. I am rather optimistic”, said the Head of EC to BiH Michael Humphreys.

Oslobodjenje, pg 3 inset ‘President and two vice-presidents’, Not signed – SNSD leader Milorad Dodik said that SNSD would only support the one president and two vice-presidents, reports BN television. Dnevni Avaz pg 4, ‘Party leaders keep their previous stances’ also reported on constitutional changes talks.

Dnevni List, pg 3 ‘Contradictory positions are endangering negotiations’, by Ivana Rozic – carries SDP’s Lagumdzija as saying that he believes some final decision would be reached today (DL probably referring to Wednesday) in order for the participants to maintain negotiating positions. HNZ President, Miljenko Brkic, says the participants of talks are close to reaching a solution regarding the election of one president and two vice presidents who would not rotate. Brkic notes that some 90% of BiH Presidency-related issues are agreed upon. DL also carries Cavic’s reaction to Tihic’s proposal regarding entity Presidents.

Vecernji List, pg 2 ‘Presidency to Parliament!’, by zk- carries HDZ President, Dragan Covic, as saying that negotiations on issue of BiH Presidency have not moved one bit, noting that the participants are yet to determine whether BiH should introduce one President, keep the current Presidency or introduce the chairman and two deputies. Covic added Croat negotiators expect that the future representatives of the three peoples in the institution of the head of state be elected through the BiH House of Peoples, which would be confirmed in the BiH House of Representatives.

Slobodna Dalmacija, pg 18 ‘’Frozen’ negotiations’, by Zlatko Tulic – SD notices that it is obvious that the participants of talks are sticking to earlier positions. The article carries statements of Tihic (on entity presidents), Lagumdzija (expects no agreement), Ivanic (rotating BiH Presidency should be maintained) and Brkic who does not expect anything spectacular in the continuation of talks.

Nezavisne Novine pg 3, announced on cover ‘HDZ opens the issue of entities’ by M.Cubro - carries statements of Covic, Tihic, Cavic, as well as of Lagumdzija and Ivanic (the latter two confirmed late Tuesday evening there has been no agreement reached regarding Presidency). Daily also carries statement of Miljenko Brkic, HNZ President, stated that agreement on BiH Presidency has almost been reached, noting: “However, it is still left to be determined who will be proposing candidates for these positions and in which manner those will be elected.”

EuroBlic RSpg 2 ‘RS representatives defending Presidency’ by D.S. - Apart from carrying Lagumdzija’s statement, daily also reads according to leak from negotiation session, the compromise on Presidency is not even in the sight. Sefik Dzaferovic, SDA senior official, confirmed this piece of information later on.

EuroBlic RSpg 2 inset ‘Ivanic: I am bothered with Tihic’ initiatives’ - reports on Ivanic’ criticism upon various initiatives Tihic is making

Glas Srpske pg 5 ‘Each persisting on its demand’ - Ivanic commented on HNZ’ Brkic (see above) statement by saying: “Yeah, forget it - we have not agreed anything.”

Nezavisne Novine pg 3 inset ‘McElchany: Minor progress made’ - carries US Ambassador’s statement

Rehn: politician expected to find solutions

 

FTV- EU Commissioner for Enlargement Olli Rehn welcomed the intention of BiH political leaders to find a solution for constitutional changes. According to Rehn, ten years after Dayton Peace Agreement, leading politicians are expected to create a sustainable and functional state. “BiH and its leaders must now choose either to preserve the current constitution with its limitations of functioning, or to decide on constitutional changes which are necessary in order to make the country ready for the association with the EU”, said Rehn. RHB, Oslobodjenje, pg 3 ‘To make functional state ’ Not signed , Dnevni Avaz, pg 4 ‘It is expected from BiH politicians to make functional state’, Nezavisne Novine pg 3 inset ‘Rehn: Functional BiH needed’ also carried the statement.

Oslobodjenje op-ed: Lagumdzija was right

 

Oslobodjenje, pg 9 op-ed ‘Nothing spectacular’ by Senka Kurtovic - Commenting statements of party leaders on Thursday’s new round of constitutional changes, author says that only SDP leader Zlatko Lagumdzija had right when he said that nothing spectacular would happen.

NN op-ed reminding BiH politicians have the chance to enter history books through SAA talks now that Austria is EU Presiding country

Nezavisne Novine op-ed pg 7 ‘Austrian chance for BiH’ by Almedin Sisic – Reminding that BiH will, in couple of weeks, start SAA talks, the author notes EU Presiding country Austria had proven to be a true friend of BiH and its citizens, therefore circumstances are quite favorable for BiH at the moment. At the same time, according to the author, individuals who are leading this state have the chance, despite to their corruption habits and criminal activities, to enter history books if they only show at least a bit of wisdom and patience.

DL: Bosniaks are in advantageous position in constitutional reforms talks

 

Dnevni List, pg 2 ‘Bosniaks in constitutional advantage’, by Mensud Zorlak – commenting on the constitutional reforms talks, for which the author claims to have lost count, the author argues that the American strategy in the talks is clearly defined – namely, Zorlak says the Americans have clearly defined which side was the victim of aggression and genocide and which side carried out the aggression and committed genocide or to be exact a constitutional solution that would satisfy a minimum of the Bosniaks’ requests would be acceptable for the US. In light of that claim, Zorlak says the ‘perpetrator of aggression and genocide’ can be subjected to pressures, which gives the Bosniaks the edge in the constitutional reforms talks.

VL on constitutional reforms talks: Politicians should use model used in defence reform

 

Vecernji List, pgs 6-7 ‘Military is an example of good reform’, mentioned on front ‘They were at war until yesterday, today they are under the same HQ’, by Tihomir Begic – Commenting on the constitutional reforms talks, the author suggests that the politicians should be using a similar model as used during the defence reform, namely to acknowledge the factual situation, abandon the concept of building a unitary state and acknowledge the differences that exist in BiH, which have been realized in establishment of three national regiments in the future BiH armed forces. Begic argues the traditions should be taken care of, not erased.

NN op-ed: BiH needs evolution, it is tired of revolutions

 

Nezavisne Novine op-ed pg 7 ‘Revolutionaries from cabinet’ by Anton Kasapovic – The author reads BiH looked up to defense and police reforms as on revolutionary reforms and he notes BiH needs an evolution since it is tired of revolutions. He says people are tired of politicians’ conflicts during which they are wasting peoples’ time, money and future and he appeals on politicians to be responsible because people did not elect them just to think about how to frame their opponents while people are hungry and dissatisfied.

Dodik: SNSD will raise question of non-confidence in RS Govt if RS President and SDS fail to do so

 

EuroBlic pg RS3 ‘Dodik is ready’ by R. Radosavljevic – SNSD’s Milorad Dodik stated that if RS President Dragan Cavic and SDS fail to raise the question of non-confidence in RS Government, SNSD would do that immediately after holidays. He claims it is possible to adopt RS budget only after a new Government is formed and added such a situation is very detrimental for RS institutions, especially in time of holding talks on constitutional changes.

HDZ founders: purge of those disloyal to leader continues

 

Oslobodjenje, pg 2 ‘Purge of those disloyal to new leader continues’ by A. Terzic – Founders of HDZBiH Bozo Rajic, Stipo Ivankovic, Petar Mrkalj, Luka Calic, Drago Majic, Ivan Duspara sent an open letter to the party President, Main Board and all members protesting for ignorance of the statute, forged party elections and continuation if a purge of those disloyal to “new leader”. Founders also criticized the expulsion of Bozo Ljubic, Martin Raguz and Josip Merdzo.

Nezavisne Novine pg 3 ‘HDZ founders invited Covic to resign’ by A. Sisic also covered the issue.

Dnevni Avaz, pg 12 ‘Founders of HDZBiH call on Dragan Covic to resign’ by F. Vele - With regard to the letter sent by the HDZ founders to party members calling on party’s president, Dragan Cavic to resign, DA carries that letter reads that the “current leadership has reached an unthinkable level of party isolation in BiH and worldwide.” According to DA, at Thursday’s session the HDZ Main Board would discuss expulsion of Bozo Ljubic, Martin Raguz and Josip Merdzo. HDZ spokesperson Miso Relota commented the letter saying that its only purpose was to put pressure on the members of the Main Board.

 

 

Economic/Social Issues

Causevic: VAT launches without problems

 

RTRS late news - Kemal Causevic, ITA Director said that there is no problem about VAT so far, adding that as far as increases of prices are concerned Prices Monitoring Teams, which will perform control, has started working in FBiH and will be established in RS by the end of the week. Talking about advantages of VAT, Causevic mentioned stimulation of export, dissimulation of import, reduces of expenses of electricity and gas, making of fair market, increase of production and opening of new jobs. Causevic sad that adopting of budget does not make any influence of VAT and added that first effects can be expected in spring.  Hayat- Causevic added that adoption of entity budgets would have no impact on VAT introduction.FTV, RTRS, BHT and RHB also carry reports on possible increase of prices and bring feature on first VAT taxpayer.

Dnevni Avaz, pg 8 ‘Naftagas first paid VAT’ by N.D – “Naftagas” from Gradiska is the first company that has paid VAT, confirmed Indirect Taxation Administration [ITA] Director Kemal Causevic.

Dnevni List, pg 3 ‘Naftagas Gradiska was first to pay VAT’, by A. Vrebac also reported on first VAT payment in BiH

Vecernji List, pg 5 ‘Bread more expensive, other prices generally stayed the same’, by Ivana Brkic-Cubela, Slobodna Dalmacija, pg 19 ‘Life more expensive by 10 percent’, by Marko Karacic, Slobodna Dalmacija, pg 19 ‘Prices of oil, flour, salt are booming’, by B. Kristo carried feature stories on possible increase of prices.

Glas Srpske pg 4 ‘Naftagas broke the ice’ by D. Vrhovac – Mihajlovic, Nezavisne Novine pg 4 ‘Naftagas firm was the first to pay VAT’ by P. K. carried Causevic’s statement on VAT introduction.

Nezavisne Novine pgs 4-5 ‘Prices of fruit went up’, ‘Naftagas firm was the first to pay VAT’, ‘More expensive medicaments are the greatest strike on citizens’ wallets’, announced on cover ‘Firms started paying VAT’, Glas Srpske pg 4 ‘Naftagas broke the ice’ by D. Vrhovac - Mihajlovic - First company to pay VAT was “Naftagas“ from Gradiska. It also reports that after the introduction of VAT, prices of basic groceries all over BiH are increasing.

Glas Srpske cover pg splash ‘Differences in prices’ by D. V. M. and N. T., EuroBlic pgs RS2-RS3, announced on cover ‘Prices of medicaments went up the most’ by Nedeljka Breberina and EuroBlic team – also report on the increase in prices.

Nezavisne Novine pg 5 ‘Price of electricity will remain the same for now’ by R. Cengic – F BiH and RS Regulatory Agencies for Electricity confirmed the price of electricity will remain the same for the moment, only taxes will increase for the difference of 7% which will lead to an increase in amounts of electricity bills.

VAT caused increase of prices

 

BHT, FTV, HAYAT, RTRS – Media report that the VAT has caused increase of prices of basic groceries. BHT- Ljubo Janjic from Association for Protection of Consumers “Blue Sphere” claimed that prices of basic groceries were increased. Authorities have announced closure of all shops that make extra profit in the period of introduction of VAT. Muhidin Alic, President of the Oil Distributors’ Section of FBiH Chamber of Commerce, announced that the oil prices in BiH might go down due to the introduction of VAT. Namely, the 20% turnover tax has been replaced by lower VAT of 17%. Head of the RS Association of Oil Distributors Vukasin Vojnovic said that the oil prices in RS wouldn’t go down in next 10 days. According to him, possible decrease of oil prices would be minor, only 0,03 KM at most. RTRS, FTV also covered the issue. HAYAT reports that citizens have reported increase of prices, especially in Mostar. FTV - Zenica Dairy Factory increased the price of milk from 0.90 KM to 1.10 KM per liter. Banja Luka dairy factories increased the prices of their products too. Water supply costs in Gradiska have increased for 17%, and sewerage costs for 7%. RTRS also reports on new prices of groceries.

Dnevni Avaz, pg 9 ‘Except margins on flour, bread, oil and milk there are no other limitations’ by Z.P - FBiH Minister of Trade Maid Ljubovic said except for the flour, bread, oil and milk other prices would be formed by the market, since no one has the monopoly.

ITA: VAT will not be influenced by failure to pass the budget

 

RTRS by Radoslav Banovic - Kemal Causevic, ITA director said that VAT will not be influenced by failure to adopt the budget and that ITA should collect 3,5 billion KM. RS Prime Minister Pero Bukejlovic said that RS Government will not give up its stance on budget and that political tensions should be overcome. He added that RS Government determined framework and that rebalance of budget is to be done possibly in June 2006.  Svetlana Cenic, RS Minister of Finance said that RS Government is under pressure to resign and that there are no objections on budget by anyone. Deputy President of FbiH, Sahbaz Dzihanovic thinks that the whole budget issue is about establishment of political crisis that will influence reforms, especially VAT implementation. Brcko District also did not adopt the budget but adopted temporary financing. Milan Tomic, President of Brcko District Assembly hopes that budget will be adopted as soon as possible.  Agreement should be found soon together with fiscal council and international representatives.

VL interview: ITA’s Corluka on VAT

 

Vecernji List, pg 5, mentioned on front ‘There will be no increase of prices of 17%’, by Zoran Kresic – Carries an interview with ITA’s Assistant Director for taxes, Dinko Corluka, in which he argues there is no ground for increase of prices for the full 17%. He reiterates earlier claims that the VAT will help eliminate grey economy in BiH, protect the taxpayers that would to operate legally and help strengthen the single market. Corluka also says that in his opinion, a single-rate VAT in the best solution, however he says the ITA would be ready to apply other models, i.e. to exempt bread, milk and basic groceries from VAT, underlining it is down to the Parliament to decide. Finally, he expects that state revenues will increase by 500 million KMs as a result of introduction of VAT. Dnevni Avaz, pg 9 ‘How the new prices should be formed’ by Z.P. also carried the statement.

OHR: VAT to strengthen the state

 

NTV Hayat by Alem KaramesicIn terms of Stabilization and Association Agreement talks, 2005 was the crucial year for BiH, states the OHR. “We have started the year with success in the VAT introduction, which presents BiH’s turnover in terms of Euro-Atlantic integrations, strengthening of economy, investments, creation of new jobs. Talks on the best way for having the state administration reduced, as well as having its efficiency improved have been commenced. All reform process which are to follow have a single aim which is to make life of BiH citizens better”, said the OHR Spokesperson Mario Brkic. Even though the International Community is going to stay in BiH, success will depend on domestic politics, adds Brkic. EUFOR states that it hopes that cooperation with BiH Ministry of Defence would be strengthened in 2006. RHB – also covered.

Oslobodjenje op-ed on social programs

 

Oslobodjenje, pg 9 op-ed ‘Social help on ice’ by Borivoje Simic - Author said that the fact that budgets on all levels have not been adopted has not been a surprise, but it has been irresponsible. He comments that adopted social programs are useless when the poor cannot count on it, adding that it is prove that authorities on all levels are in crisis. Not releasing other parties of their responsibilities, editorial points at PDP and Party for BiH, accusing them for to cause destabilization at the entity level. Author says that since in the year of elections authorities take care of social programs, makes narrow space for economic development issues, adding that authorities at the municipality level used budget incomes increase to increase their own payments. With regard to reaction of International Monetary Fund [IMF] on the budget issues, editorial quotes warning of BiH Central Bank Kemal Kozaric who says that this could impact BiH’s credit rating.

Bukejlovic: pensions by Jan 10

 

BHT, RTRS - RS Prime Minister Pero Bukejlovic announced that the December pensions in RS are going to be paid out by January 10th. Bukejlovic emphasized that the payment of pensions in full amount must continue in the 2006 and that the pensions must increase in accordance with the increase of salaries.

Nezavisne Novine pg 2 ‘December pensions in accordance with decisions’ by G. G., Glas Srpske pg 2 ‘Better days for pensioners are in sight’ by Srna, EuroBlic pg RS3 ‘State collected enough money for pensions’ by M. S. also carried the statement.

Bukejlovic: New proposal budget by end of Jan

Dnevni Avaz, pg 4 ‘Representatives on budget at end of January’, by N. Diklic – RS Prime Minister Pero Bukejlovic said he would send RSNA the budget proposal for 2006 by end of January.

IMF: BiH state and entity budges have to be decreased by KM 450 million

 

Dnevni Avaz, front pg splash and pg 2 ‘IMF: Budgets have to be decreased by KM 450 million’ by Tarik Lazovic – International Monetary Fund [IMF] warned the BiH authorities that the proposed entity and state budgets cannot be a basis for signing the new stand-by arrangement worth 50 million US dollars. Daily carries that the talks with the IMF can be continued only if BiH Fiscal council puts new proposals in line with the IMF recommendations, i.e. decreased by KM 450 million. BiH Finance Minister Ljerka Maric told DA that the budget proposals have indeed exceeded agreed quotas, claiming that she is “not clear about the final budget estimates due to lots of amendments have been adopted.” Maric added that the most important thing is for the budgets to finally be adopted, even if they exceed the set limits. Inset ‘Extravagant parliamentarians’ carries Maric as criticizing the parliamentarians in all houses for overspending and extravagant behaviour.

DA op-ed says politicians do not care about IMF warning

 

Dnevni Avaz, op-ed pg 3 ‘IMF’s warning’ by Tarik Lazovic – Commenting the IMF warning addressed to the BiH authorities at entity and state levels of having to cut their costs, author says that this could lead to loss of money for BiH which however doesn’t seem to worry politicians. “It seems that politicians think it is more important to gain more votes for October elections,” concludes editorial.

SDA denies it had reached an agreement on mutual support re adoption of RS and state budgets

 

Nezavisne Novine pg 2 ‘No agreement with SDS with regard to budget adoption’ by V. Popovic – SDA should soon define its final stance with regard to the crisis in RS, caused by non-adoption of RS budget. SDA delegate at RS NA Ahmet Sadikovic rejected claims that an agreement was reached between SDS and SDA with regard to their mutual support. ‘Non-adoption of the budget on the entity level has nothing to do with the budget that should be adopted at the state level’, Sadikovic stated and added SDS should not spread RS crisis onto BiH level.

Kovacevic: PDP members supported the budget

 

Nezavisne Novine pg 3 ‘Kovacevic: PDP members supported the budget’ by V. P. – The Head of RS Government’s Bureau for Public Relations, Cvijeta Kovacevic on Tuesday stated RS PM Pero Bukejlovic did talk to PDP members who work at the Government and who have directly participated in development of the budget but he exerted no pressure on them, nor he threatened them with removals. She said he held a meeting with them in order to find out whether they stand behind their work regarding the development of the budget. PDP, on the other hand, viewed this meeting as the beginning of revenge over refusal of PDP delegates to support the budget. PDP member and Assistant to Minister for Education Ranko Savanovic, who participated in development of the budget, said no person exerted pressure on him and refused to give any details on the meeting with RS PM.

Comments on temporary financing from budget in RS: Syndicate Union and pensioners not content

 

Glas Srpske pg 5 ‘Government must leave’ by Z.M. - The Serb Radical Party “Dr Vojislav Seselj” is of the view that the RS Government must tender resignation. Predrag Markocevic, Party’s Executive Board member, said Party is ready to support establishment of a new executive power, that would reflect Serb national unity.

Glas Srpske pg 6 ‘They hope for improvement’ by M.Milunovic - Ranka Misic, President of the RS Syndicate Union, told daily that in spite of decision on temporary financing, the Syndicate Union expects that the budget for this year (2006) would be adopted asap, stressing: “We hope the budget to-be-adopted is to satisfy needs of workers, pensioners and all citizens of RS.”

Glas Srpske pg 7 ‘From bad to worse’ by R.Skondric - Ilioja Stevancevic, President of the RS Pensioners’ Party, stated that decision on temporary financing from budget, wave of price increases and VAT have thrown RS pensioners into despair and hopelessness, stressing the situation is becoming unbearable.

Bricko District Assembly adopt decision on temporary financing

Dnevni Avaz, pg 2 ‘District institutions on temporary arrangement’, by E.R. – District Brcko Assembly adopted decision on temporary financing District institutions for the first three months of 2006. Brcko Mayor Mirsad Djapo said this should not affect budget users.

No halt in gas delivery by February 1

 

Oslobodjenje, front pg splash and pgs 4-5 ‘Guaranteed delivery, increased prices by February 1?’ by A. Terzic – Technical Director of the BH Gas Salih Vatrenjak told Oslobodjenje that no halt in gas delivery is going to happen before the February 1, by when BiH has to deal with the 105 million KM debt towards Russia. However he announced possible price increase.

BHT, Hayat, FTV, RTRS- Russian company GASPROM established normal flow of gas after dispute with Ukraine. Slavo Krajisnik, director of Sarajevo Gas said that the situation is normal now for Bosnia and Herzegovina but that Russia and Ukraine still did not make agreement. Russia- Ukraine dispute over market price for gas that Russia wants to impose on Ukraine will be discussed tomorrow in Brussels.

Nezavisne Novine pg 2, announced on cover ‘Normal inflow of gas to BiH’ byN. Krsman, Glas Srpske pg 2 ‘“Gazprom” opened pipes’ by N. Zelenovic also covered the issue.

New system of collection of RTV tax introduced

BHT- New system of collecting of the RTV tax through three telecom operators has been officially introduced on January 1st. Citizens who refuse to pay the fee will face legal proceedings before court.

 

 

Security/Crime

Coppola takes over EUPM command

 

Hayat, Oslobodjenje, pg 2 ‘Vincenzo Coppola new Head of EUPM’ Not signed, Dnevni Avaz, pg 2 ‘Coppola announces tackling crime’ - EUPM has announced that Brigadier-General Vincenzo Coppola has officially assumed his duty as the new Head of Mission. EUPM spokesperson Zinaida Ilaria told a press conference in Sarajevo on Tuesday the EUPM will in the coming two years play a more pro-active role in assisting local police in planning and conducting major and organized crime investigations. Coppola stated there are important tasks ahead of BiH such as the police reform, adding that the EUP would continue to support SIPA and the SBS. RHB also covers.

Oslobodjenje, pg 2 ‘OHR hails announcement’, Dnevni Avaz, pg 2 ‘Work with Italian soldiers would be of special value to EUPM’, Vecernji List pg 3 ‘Italian Coppola Head of Mission’ by em, Dnevni List pg 2 ‘EUPM helps prevention of organized crime’ by M. Zorlak, Glas Srpske pg 4 ‘Coppola took over the duty’ by M. Dz., Nezavisne Novine pg 5 ‘Vincenzo Coppola new EUPM Commissioner’ by A. S. also covered the issue.

Brka (MP): More than 430 illegal border crossings

 

Dnevni List, pg 6, mentioned on front ‘Terrorists can enter BiH at more than 430 illegal border crossings’, by Anja Vrebac – In a statement for DL, an MP in the BiH House of Peoples, Osman Brka, underlines that the BiH Security Ministry’s report notes that there are more than 430 border crossings that are not under full control of the BiH State Border Service. Brka also claims to have learned from a senior BiH official, whose identity he does not want to reveal, that some 200 tonnes of live cattle is being smuggled into BiH at a bridge near Bijeljina alone on daily basis. He also argues that the IC is aware of the situation, wondering why the IC does not apply the pressure and sort the issue out. “It would appear there is a tacit agreement and moratorium about the issue”, says Brka.

SiCG Defense Minister Stankovic: Mladic is not hiding in barracks

 

Nezavisne Novine pg 2 ‘Mladic is not in barracks’ by N. N., Glas Srpske pg 2 ‘Mladic is not hiding in barracks’ not signed – SiCG Minister of Defense Zoran Stankovic has denied claims of the Hague Tribunal that Ratko Mladic is hiding in military barracks and he added the Army is ready to swiftly react on any information on Mladic’s whereabouts.

Ljajic: Serbia and RS are politically interested in the arrest of Mladic

 

Hayat- Commenting on ICTY Spokesperson Florence Hartman statement that according to all ICTY’s information, Ratko Mladic was still in Serbia, the Chair SCG National Council for cooperation wit the ICTY Rasim Ljajic said that one couldn’t be 100 % positive that Mladic is or is not in Serbia. Ljajic said that in past year, several locations have been checked, as given information by certain security services. “Information that Mladic is in Serbia present a pressure instrument in order for the state to make additional effort which would result in arrest of Mladic”, said Ljajic. Ljajic adds that it is irrelevant whether Serbia, RS or any other state is going to arrest and extradite Mladic to the ICTY. “Both, Serbia and the RS are politically interested in arrest of Mladic”, said Ljajic. Member of the SCG Council for Cooperation with ICTY Zoran Loncar said that Serbia was ready to give additional documentation that the ICTY seeks from Serbia, but under condition that the documentation is used only in certain processes. Commenting on this statement, Ljajic says that he had a meeting with Serbia-Montenegrin Minister of Defence Zoran Stankovic and that they agreed that all documents on Mladic should be delivered to the ICTY. RTRS also carries Hartman’s statement.

 

 


Emerika Bluma 1, 71000 Sarajevo; Tel: +387 33 283 500, Fax: +387 33 283 501 www.ohr.int