NATO Approves Membership Action Plan for Bosnia

NATO ministers meeting on Tuesday in Brussels called on Bosnia to submit its first annual national program, after agreeing to start implementing its Membership Action Plan, MAP, which was first offered years ago.

The programme of advice, assistance and practical support is designed for countries wishing to join the Atlantic alliance.

"I expect ministers to agree that we will be ready to accept the first annual national program of Bosnia. It is now up to Bosnia to make next step and decide whether it will take up this offer," the alliance's secretary general told a press conference on December 5.

Federica Mogherini, the EU High Representative, who attended the NATO meeting, emphasised the importance of a European perspective for all Balkan countries.

"The European Union has worked a lot, especially in these last couple of years, with all our partners in the Western Balkans, reaffirming a clear European Union perspective for all our partners in the region that ... is a region that is crucial for European security," Mogherini told the summit.

NATO foreign ministers invited Bosnia to join the MAP back in 2010. However, activation was conditioned on the state first registering all military property.

The problem is that this comes under the control of the Bosnia's two entities, the Serb-dominated Republika Srpska and the Federation entity.

Bosnian Serb officials strongly oppose the idea of the state assuming control of this military property, insisting it should remain the entities' responsibility.

After the state Constitutional Court ruled in August 2017 that a military facility in Han Pijesak, in Republika Srpska, must be registered with the state, Bosnia was given an opportunity to accelerate the process.

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