The Serb member of Bosnia's tripartite Presidency Milorad Dodik and the President of Republika Srpska (RS), the Serb-majority half of the country, Zeljka Cvijanovic, joined on Sunday regional Serb leaders in celebrating a Christian Orthodox holiday with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic.
Along with other guests, Dodik carried a ‘Badnjak’ tree into the Serbian presidency and took part in a meeting at which cooperation and plans on how to further develop relations among Serbs in the region were discussed.
“We are all looking up to Serbia and we wish it great success,” Dodik said at a press conference. “We want peace to be maintained. That’s what Serbs want today.”
“Sometimes it seems as if we are unjustifiably backing down due to the numerous attacks against the Serb national community, but obviously we do not want any conflict,” he said. “We want to improve the position of Serb people and Republika Srpska in Bosnia and Herzegovina.”
Republika Srpska, the semi-autonomous Serb-dominated entity within the country, is for Serbs in Bosnia a “synonym for freedom,” while Serbia is “a synonym for life,” said Dodik.
“We want to legalise that approach, as it does not offend anybody, just as I don’t think it is a problem for Bosniaks or anyone else to express their interests which do not offend others,” he said.
Vucic said that all the Serb representatives he met with agreed that maintaining peace and stability in the region is priority.
Apart from Dodik and Cvijanovic, Serbia’s Prime Minister, Ana Brnabic, the head of the Serb National Council in Croatia, Milorad Pupovac, the leader of the Democratic Party of Serbs in Macedonia, MP Ivan Stoilkovic, the leader of the New Serb Democracy in Montenegro, Andrija Mandic, and the leader of the Democratic People’s Party there, Milan Knezevic, attended the meeting with Vucic.