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EU Official Warns Bosnian Politicians To Heed Protester Demands

EU Commissioner for Enlargement Stefan Fuele in Sarajevo on February 18
EU Enlargement Commissioner Stefan Fuele has called on Bosnia-Herzegovina’s ethnically divided politicians to listen to the demands of ordinary people for economic change and anticorruption reforms.

Fuele was speaking in Sarajevo on February 18 after meeting with political leaders and protesters who have staged mass demonstrations this month over unemployment, graft, and interethnic political bickering.

Fuele also said he was ending his efforts to help Bosnia's politicians change the constitution to allow members of any ethnic minority to hold office.

Politicians from the country’s three main groups -- Muslims, Croats, and Serbs -- have for years failed to reach a compromise on the issue.

The EU, citing a 2009 ruling by the European Court of Human Rights, says Bosnia cannot join the EU until this constitutional question is resolved.

Based on reporting by AP and Reuters