Section: Country Profiles

Bosnia and Herzegovina

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Country expert: Eldar Sarajlic

CITSEE papers on Bosnia and Herzegovina

A Citizenship Beyond the Nation-State: Dilemmas of the ‘Europeanisation’ of Bosnia and Herzegovina

Author: Eldar Sarajlic

Abstract

The paper deals with the tension between the predominant ideas of citizenship in Bosnia and Herzegovina and those imposed upon the country by the EU integration dynamic. It tries to argue that the tension between citizenship as a concept moulded within the historical and conceptual parameters of the European nation-state and the complex sociopolitical reality of Bosnia and Herzegovina that clearly diverges from the nation-state model creates frictions and erodes the democratization process. The paper offers an analysis of citizenship legislation in Bosnia ad Herzegovina and a variety of historical, political and social determinants that have shaped the existing citizenship regime in the country. By doing this, it aims to examine the character of citizenship in contemporary Bosnia and Herzegovina, to question the social and political underpinnings of its historical development, to assess the possibility for the establishment of a liberal democratic citizenship framework and to chart a way for explaining new developments, driven by European integration processes.

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The Bosnian Triangle: Ethnicity, Politics and Citizenship

Author: Eldar Sarajlic

Abstract

This paper aims to analyse contemporary citizenship issues in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the context of transition, conflict and identity politics. It tries to contextualize the development of citizenship policies and practices in historical perspective and to assess the current state of affairs. It extends the claim that citizenship in Bosnia and Herzegovina has been set within a triangle of social and political relations in which ethnic identity and politics play the other two sides. This triangle - citizenship, ethnic identity and politics - represents key anchor points around which discussions on the Bosnian statehood revolve. The paper also provides a historical overview of citizenship in Bosnia and Herzegovina in different phases, including a detailed account of the current citizenship regime.

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This paper has been produced in close collaboration with the European Union Democracy Observatory on Citizenship (EUDO-Citizenship) and has been made available as a EUDO country report on http://www.eudo-citizenship.eu/. The paper followed the EUDO structure for country reports presenting historical background, current citizenship regimes and recent debates on citizenship matters in the country under scrutiny. 

Click below to access complementary materials on [links to EUDO webpages]

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