Bosnia and Herzegovina History and Politics

Bosnia and Herzegovina History and Politics


Densely populated during the Neolithic, it was inhabited since the 4th century (BC) by the Illyrians. In the 3rd century (BC), the Roman Empire included this territory as part of the Illyrian province. Slaviced since the 7th century, it was part of the Byzantine Empire. The first time the name Bosnia was used was in 950, in a book called De administrando empire of the Byzantine Emperor Constantine VII in which Bosnia is consigned as part of the territory of the kingdom of Croatia (the current territory of Bosnia was known as Croatia Red). In the 12th century a kingdom of Bosnia was formed, which remained independent until 1463, when it was annexed to the Ottoman Empire by Mehmet II..

With the arrival of the Ottomans, the Middle Ages in Bosnia ended. The majority of the residents accept Islam as a new religion, which to this day remains a very important social factor in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Most of Bosnia’s cultural heritage, such as the Mostar Bridge, comes from this period.

It remained under Turkish rule until 1878, with the exception of the period between 1718 and 1739, when it was under Austrian control. In the 19th century the enmity between the sultan and the people grew, encouraged by the nationalist triumph in neighboring Serbia. The repression by Abdulhamit II of the revolts of 1875 would provoke the Russian intervention, which declared war on the Ottoman Empire in 1877. After the conflict, the Congress of Berlin granted the administration of the country to Austria-Hungary in 1878. Mostar Bridge.

In 1878, Bosnia became administered by the Austro-Hungarian Empire that would annex it in 1908, forming part of it until its dissolution in 1918, after the end of the First World War that had started with the assassination of Archduke Francisco Fernando and his wife. in Sarajevo (see Sarajevo bombing).

After the end of the war it would be integrated into the Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes, which in 1929 adopted the name of Yugoslavia. During World War II the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina was annexed by the Croatian fascist state, between 1941 and 1944. The Axis defeated, it returned to form part of Yugoslavia, under the name of the Socialist Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, as one of the six constituent republics of the Federal People’s Republic. In 1992 itproclaimed its independence, as the Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina, after the referendum of March 1, 1992.

According to localcollegeexplorer, the Bosniaks and the Bosnian-Croats of Bosnia and Herzegovina supported independence but the majority of Bosnian Serbs (30% of the population), supported by the rest of the Serbs of the former Yugoslavia opposed and began the Bosnian war in an attempt to creation of Greater Serbia. In the first years of that war they occupied 70% of Bosnian territory in a violent way – carrying out ethnic cleansing. The war ended with the Battle of West Bosnia and the defeat of the Bosnian Serb army, which immediately afterwards agreed to have Slobodan Milošević sign the Dayton accords on their behalf on November 21, 1995. The price of the war was enormous: 250,000 dead and more. 2.5 million refugees.

Currently, Bosnia and Herzegovina is a country headed towards its administrative unification, although with great instabilities caused by the Muslim ultra-nationalists who want to annex the Republika Srpska. At the moment it remains a territorial puzzle with various police forces, separate judicial powers and different assemblies where the nationalist parties of each of the ethnic communities continue to retain power, impeding their access to the European Union (EU).


The first mission of the European Union (EU) European Security and Defense Policy (ESDP) began on 1 January 2003, when the 500-officer EU police mission replaced the international police task force of the United Nations (UN) in Bosnia and Herzegovina.

EUFOR Althea is a military force under the orders of the European Council, whose actions in Bosnia and Herzegovina seek to militarily monitor compliance with the Dayton agreements, taking over from NATO forces in 2004. EUFOR is led by the Political and Security Committee and the civilian implementation of the treaty rests in the hands of the Office of the High Representative. The efforts of both are coordinated by the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Catherine Ashton.

Political organization

The Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina is constituted as a federal republic, and is administratively divided into 50 districts, its capital being the city of Sarajevo. The country is made up of two fully autonomous entities, each of which has its own government and National Assembly: The Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina (Federacija Bosne i Hecegovine), (which is made up of areas with a Bosnian-Muslim and Croatian population).) which occupies 51% of the total territory of the country and by the Republika Srpska (Republika Srpska), with a Serbian population, which occupies the remaining 49%. Political division in cantons of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. In blue the Republic of Serbia, in violet the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and to the north the District of Brčko which is governed autonomously.

The Dayton Accords established two “ethnically pure” states (due to physical elimination – murder – or expulsion of ethnic minorities among the country’s residents). Thus arose: the Serbian-Bosnian Republic (Sprska) and the Croatian-Muslim Federation (Federacija Bosne i Hecegovine).

This division was created by the 1995 Treaty of Dayton, to which the Autonomous City of Brcko (Distrikt Brčko) was subsequently added in 2000, located in the NE of the country occupying areas of the two main entities of the Bosnian State.

Bosnia and Herzegovina History and Politics