The Council of Europe and Bosnia and Herzegovina will activate the new Action Plan for the 2018-2021 period. This is the continuation of the 2015-2017 Action Plan. The aim of this Action Plan is to enhance practices in the areas of human rights, rule of law and democracy.
It outlines the joint cooperation and actions to be taken by national partners and the Council of Europe, in order to facilitate not just the fulfilment of the obligations as Council of Europe member State, but also the assistance within the European integration process. A budget of EUR 18.1 million is envisaged for the successful implementation of projects and activities, of which EUR 2.7 million has already been provided.
The Council of Europe and BiH authorities have agreed to jointly advance reforms through cooperation programmes, aiming to enhance the efficiency and quality of the justice system, to harmonise the application of the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), to fight against ill-treatment of detained persons, to improve governance at all levels, to enhance the protection of personal data and to combat corruption, terrorist financing and money laundering.
The emphasis will also be placed on countering discrimination including through the fight against segregation in schools and further efforts to enhance the rights of national minorities. Strengthening the electoral integrity, improving the independence of the media and safety of journalists and building trust between communities are among the strategic priorities of the Action Plan, as well as the promotion of equal opportunities for women, youth, and Roma.
The Action Plan itself stipulates that in spite of certain progress concerning MONEYVAL, Bosnia still needs to improve its operations in the prevention of money laundering.
The Council of Europe states that the leading judicial institution, the Venice Commission, is ready to provide further support to Bosnian authorities in reforming its election law and that the focus of their assistance will be the upcoming general election.
The new four-year Council of Europe Action Plan for Bosnia and Herzegovina will be jointly launched on Monday, July 16, 2018, by the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Igor Crnadak and the Director of the Office of the Directorate General of Programmes of the Council of Europe, Verena Taylor.