Tags: Ukraine | Russia | crisis | Bosnia | politics | arms

Bosnia Presidency Warns Against Arms Exports to Ukraine

Wednesday, 11 Feb 2015 12:15 PM

Bosnia's joint presidency warned on Wednesday against allowing arms exports to Ukraine, fearing retaliation from Russia over winter gas supplies.

"Exports of arms and military equipment to Ukraine at this moment are not in Bosnia-Hercegovina's foreign policy interest," a presidency statement said.

"That would not contribute to regional security, stability and international diplomatic efforts to achieve a peaceful solution for the Ukrainian crisis," the statement added.

A local arms manufacturing company, which has signed contracts with the Ukrainian interior ministry for weapons and military equipment sales, asked the Bosnian authorities for permission to go ahead with the exports last year.

The five-million-euro ($5.6-million) deal should have been followed by others, the company's officials said.

The final decision on the exports was to have been made by the foreign trade ministry. But it first sought an opinion from the presidency and it is expected that the final decision will be in line with its recommendation.

"I was saying from the beginning that arms exports to Ukraine would be harmful for Bosnia," presidency chairman Mladen Ivanic said recently.

"The purchase of gas at the current price would be put into question, as well as many agreements that are beneficial for our farmers," he added.

Bosnia imports all of its gas from Russia.

Russia's foreign ministry, quoted in January by Bosnia's FENA news agency, called on the Bosnian authorities to "give up [any] intention to export weapons to Kiev."

Bosnian Foreign Trade Minister Boris Tucic, an ethnic Serb, resigned last month in protest against the proposed arms exports. Russia is considered the main ally of ethnic Serbs in the Balkans region.

Fighting between Ukrainian forces and pro-Moscow rebels has cost at least 5,300 lives since April.

© AFP 2017

 
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Bosnia's joint presidency warned on Wednesday against allowing arms exports to Ukraine, fearing retaliation from Russia over winter gas supplies.
Ukraine, Russia, crisis, Bosnia, politics, arms
283
2015-15-11
Wednesday, 11 Feb 2015 12:15 PM
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