Republika Srpska President Milorad Dodik says that peoples’ right to self-determination should be affirmed, since borders are not given by God. He says that he does not require that borders be changed by force, but by agreement between peoples, adding that the balance of power will also change because the world is not the same as ten years ago.
“They have stolen Kossovo from Serbia, directed us to unsuccessful BiH, saying that borders cannot be changed. Of course, this should be left to history and time, at the moment it seems like there are no changes,” Dodik told the Politika daily.
He says that the international factors are violating the way of decision making, which they will have to forget, and that getting rid of the protectorate is the issue of the highest priority in BiH.
The Republika Srpska president says that getting rid of the protectorate will be good for BiH and that this must be done if they want to have any BiH in the future.
According to him, current Serb representatives in Sarajevo are bad for Republika Srpska. “Instead of representing Republika Srpska in Sarajevo, they put pressure on Republika Srpska on behalf of Sarajevo, without consultations with us,” Dodik has said.
He says that these representatives accept criticism from foreigners, who want to make BiH institutions superior to Republika Srpska and its institutions.
The Republika Srpska president says that he would like the Serbian state and political elite to reach a consensus that unification is our goal, but exclusively in a peaceful way and by agreement, since without peace nothing has any sense.
Dodik, who is the SNSD candidate for the Serbian member of the BiH Presidency, says that he will go to Sarajevo to strengthen Republika Srpska, that this does not mean any change in his politics and that everything he will be doing will be subordinated to the interests of Srpska and the Serbian people.
He says that Sarajevo and Banjaluka would have the best relations if they separated and if everyone had their own state.
“We must suffer and will continue to suffer, since peace has no price. Putting up with mistreatment of Serbs in BiH can be justified only by preservation of peace,” Dodik has said.
Regarding the recent visit to Sarajevo by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Dodik says that he experienced it as a confirmation of divisions wherein Muslim Sarajevo lives one life and sees the future completely differently than Serbs and Croats.
“Erdogan represents a large country, which is an economic and political factor. But messages about a testament, and ‘their territory’, or that they came and will not leave, are disputable, so even though we can do nothing, we couldn’t help but notice them,” Dodik has said.
He says that he appreciates the fact that Russian President Vladimir Putin ascribes importance to Republika Srpska and that the Russian politics in the Balkans is the politics of peace and respect for local political players.
“They will not stop our cooperation with Russia, especially because not a single request from Moscow was aimed at destabilizing the situation or making the situation here more difficult,” Dodik has said.
He reiterated that Americans, Britons and even the EU allocated funds to prevent the Russian influence from being spread in the Balkans, and that Britons are spinning the poisoning of a spy, on the basis of which they are creating a retaliation politics against people they mark as their targets.
“They brought 50 people to Sarajevo to build some center, and we are getting organized in a similar way. We will respond to every action that is directed against us in the manner we see fit,” the Republika Srpska president has said.
He has reiterated that the Republika Srpska economy is on the rise, that the export to import ratio has never been greater, that the GDP doubled during the current government in Srpska.
Regarding opposition’s criticism that he does not pay enough attention to the economy, Dodik has said that their complaints serve daily political ends, but that polls show that people in Republika Srpska see it.