National Day of France marked in Sarajevo
15.07.2019 at 10:09
French Ambassador to BiH Guillaume Rousson hosted on Friday evening in Sarajevo a formal reception on the occasion of the National Day of France, known also as Bastille Day.
Numerous domestic and foreign officials had a chance to hear the outlines of the French strategy for the Balkans, which was drafted in April, and which makes specific proposals for several important areas for the countries in the region such as security, defense, and the judiciary.
In the area of justice, he singled out the EU4Justice program that is run by France since the beginning of the year under the IPA program.
"An international team from the Department for International Cooperation is currently in BiH with the support of other European Union countries. It is a European Judicial Reform Program in BiH funded by the IPA," Rousson explained.
In the area of security, the most prominent cooperation, supported by numerous partners, is, in his words, the fight against smuggling of small arms and weapons.
Speaking about the European Union, he underlined that the Commission's opinion is well known, and that the Roadmap is clear and demanding.
"In this respect, in the coming months, these activities will be of particular importance for BiH. In the eyes of the member states, this action will reflect the real level of involvement of local authorities at all levels on the path to EU accession. So we can only regret that at this crucial moment, the new power at the level of the Federation of BiH and the state has not yet been fully constituted," said Rousson.
He also pointed to the success of the first Paris Peace Forum on 11 November last year.
"This initiative, with the aim of strengthening international cooperation, gathered 6,000 participants, of whom 65 heads of state and governments, including Mr. Bakir Izetbegović on behalf of BiH and 700 journalists. The second edition will be in November, with a promise of a great international gathering," says Rousson.
He stressed that France will strengthen its political relations with the region in several areas.
"Activities of the French Development Agency is one such example. One agreement has already been signed with Serbia and the other has been proposed to Bosnia and Herzegovina," said the French Ambassador to BiH at the celebration of the National Day of France.