Ensuring political representation in a restructured Bosnia and Herzegovina

PRIO Policy Brief

Stavrevska, Elena B. (2013) Ensuring political representation in a restructured Bosnia and Herzegovina, CORE Policy Brief, 1. Oslo: PRIO.

This policy brief highlights a largely overlooked problem in Bosnia and Herzegovina related to fictitious residence registration. In order to secure better social benefits or enable their children to receive an education in their mother tongue and instruction in the religion they practise, many citizens have opted to register themselves as residing in one entity while living in another. In so doing, they not only lose their eligibility to vote and to be represented politically where they live, but also limit their interaction with people of other ethnicities – and, accordingly, the possibility for reconciliation and genuine conflict resolution. This practice, encouraged by the lack of coordination between the entities, thus undermines the possibilities for democracy and sustainable peace in the country. How does the problem affect democracy and sustainable peace?

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