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Putin Meets With Republika Srpska President In Moscow


Russian President Vladimir Putin (right) meets with Republika Srpska President Milorad Dodik at the Kremlin in Moscow on September 22.

Russian President Vladimir Putin (right) meets with Republika Srpska President Milorad Dodik at the Kremlin in Moscow on September 22.

Moscow with Milorad Dodik, the president of Bosnia-Herzegovina's autonomous Republika Srpska (RS) region.

The TASS news agency said the two leaders discussed "the situation in the Balkans and bilateral interaction" during the September 22 meeting.

Dodik said ahead of his trip that he was going to Moscow to discuss economic issues and cooperation with Russia.

He added that the two would also discuss a controversial planned referendum on September 25 on establishing a national day in RS, which has raised tensions in Bosnia-Herzegovina, of which the Republika Srpska is one of the country's two entities.

Bosnia's Constitutional Court has ruled that "Statehood Day" in mainly ethnic Serbian Srpska discriminates against ethnic Croats and Bosniaks because January 9 coincides with an Orthodox Christian holiday.

January 9 is also the day in 1992 when Bosnian Serbs proclaimed a Serbian state separate from Bosnia, one of the causes of the bloody Bosnian war that began just a few months later.

Dodik has said the referendum would be held regardless of the decision by the Sarajevo high court, which said the vote should be scrapped.

Based on reporting by TASS, Interfax, B92, and Reuters
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