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Bosnia: Muslims and Bosnian Croats Reach Agreement in Mostar

Mostar, August 6 (RFE/RL) -- Bosnian Croats and Muslims finally reached agreement today on a plan to jointly govern the Bosnian-Herzegovinian city of Mostar, European Union (EU) spokesman Dragan Gasic said.

The agreement came after several days of EU-mediated talks to persuade Croats to accept the results of recent elections in which Muslims won a narrow majority of seats in a newly elected city council. Officials said details of the accord would be released later in the day.

Mijo Brajkovic, mayor of Croat-ruled west Mostar, told reporters the Muslims accepted Croat terms that a still-to-be-formed constitutional court rule on the validity of the elections. Brajkovic said the first joint council session would be held around August 15.

Bosnian Croats boycotted the city council after the election. EU mediators have struggled to end the political deadlock and have inisted the Croats recognize the results.

The EU--which has administered Mostar since 1994--had threatened to withdraw from Mostar unless Mostar's Muslim and Croat leaders agreed to abide by the results of the poll. International negotiators said the Croats were to blame for the impasse because they threatened to boycott city council meetings.

European nations and the United States have pressed the Bosnian Croats to drop their boycott, fearing an impasse in Mostar could jeopardize the success of Bosnia's first postwar national elections on September 14.