“Organised crime and corruption work very well together, have established networks, and we have to match them with a coordinated approach involving different agencies at different levels in Bosnia and Herzegovina. We can only be strong in our efforts if we are coordinated,” said Khaldoun Sinno, Charge d’Affairs of the Delegation of the European Union to Bosnia and Herzegovina, today during the official launch of the new €2.2 million worth EU4Justice project.
The project ‘EU4Justice: Support to the Fight against Organised Crime and Corruption in Bosnia and Herzegovina’ is part of continuous EU support to Bosnia and Herzegovina’s Rule of Law sector, aiming to enhance cooperation within the entire criminal justice chain in BiH, including law enforcement agencies, prosecutors and judges, for a more effective response to serious crime.
“Corruption and organised crime in Bosnia and Herzegovina is a big problem that needs to be tackled, and you do not really need the European Union to tell you so. This is a top priority for the European Union, not only in BiH but in the whole region,” Sinno underlined, adding that “It is important to note that we have a whole pool of experts from EU member states that will be made available to increase the trust of citizens in the justice system in Bosnia and Herzegovina, which, in essence, is what this project is all about. This project aims to provide targeted support to finally establish a credible track record in the fight against organised crime and corruption, and enhance cooperation within the entire criminal justice chain in BiH.“
H.E. Ambassador Guillaume Rousson, the Ambassador of the Republic of France to BiH, observed that in the context of the upcoming Opinion of the European Commission on BiH’s membership application, EU member states, particularly France, take a strong interest in the area of Rule of Law and that the project’s assistance is therefore timely in this regard. “It is not just one of the projects, it is specialised in terms of the modalities of implementation and the engagement of the pool of experts,” stressed Ambassador Rousson.
The EU is managing almost 15M EUR to support Rule of Law with ongoing and planned assistance that is crucial for the citizens of the country as well as for the economic development of Bosnia and Herzegovina.