Igranje sa sudbinom: Bosna i Hercegovina bez vladavine zakona
Igranje sa sudbinom: Bosna i Hercegovina bez vladavine zakona
Table of Contents
  1. Executive Summary
Changing Dynamics in the Western Balkans
Changing Dynamics in the Western Balkans
Report 127 / Europe & Central Asia

Igranje sa sudbinom: Bosna i Hercegovina bez vladavine zakona

Bosna i Hercegovina jos uvijek ne vlada zakonom. Umjesto zakona, na sceni su politike sa nacionalnim predznakom, nedosljednost u primjeni zakona, korumpirani i nekompetentni sudovi, fragmentirani pravosudni prostor, polovično razrađene ili provedene reforme, i grubi nemar.

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KRATAK PREGLED

Bosna i Hercegovina jos uvijek ne vlada zakonom. Umjesto zakona, na sceni su politike sa nacionalnim predznakom, nedosljednost u primjeni zakona, korumpirani i nekompetentni sudovi, fragmentirani pravosudni prostor, polovično razrađene ili provedene reforme, i grubi nemar. Ukratko, Bosna i Hercegovina  je zemlja u kome se zakon i oni koji ga provode malo cijene i slabo im se vjeruje.

Građani BiH nisu jednaki pred zakonom, i oni to znaju. Ostvarivanje zakonskoga prava na povrat imovine ili vraćanje na radno mjesto suvise često ovisi o etničkoj pripadnosti pojedinca - ili o etničkoj pripadnosti sudije koji o tome odlučuje. /\ak i kada se na sudu dostigne pravda, sanse za provođenje takve odluke u djelo nerijetko su slabe, budući da se izvrsenje  sudskih  odluka često nezakonito odlaze ili izbjegava. Pravda također ovisi i o geografskom faktoru. Ono sto se u jednom entitetu ili kantonu smatra ratnim zločinom u drugom se jos uvijek slavi kao herojsko djelo.

Nacionalnost i geografija nisu jedine prepreke na putu ka pravdi. Vazna je i nečija pozicija unutar  ili  pak odnos sa nacionalnom i političkom elitom u određenoj sredini. Kaznjavanje ljudi koji imaju moć i poznanstva zbog krađe javnih sredstava ili prisvajanja javnih dobara- bilo da to čine u ime 'nacionalnog interesa' ili zbog sopstvenog bogaćenja - i dalje je gotovo nepoznato. Iako se u novinama svaki dan pise o korupciji ljudi na visokim pozicijama, a formalne istrage o takvim slučajevima su gotovo jednako česte, jos uvijek nijedan bivsi ili sadasnji lider nacionalne stranke nije osuđen ili poslat u zatvor.

Za razliku od većine građana BiH, koji postuju zakon, nacionalna diskriminacija i 'etnički obojena pravda' ne dotiče svercere, reketase, one koji se bave utajom poreza, svercom oruzja, trgovinom drogom i bijelim robljem,  i  njihove  zastitnike.    Te  grupe  se naslađuju ostacima "bratstva i jedinstva" bivse Jugoslavije, poslujući van unutrasnjih i spoljnih granica i nacionalne  i vjerske podjele. Njihovi jedinstveni interesi - lično bogaćenje i krsenje zakona - predstavljaju pravi kontrast nejedinstvu onih koji zele postovati zakon.

Ne samo da je bosanskohercegovačko pravosuđe podijeljeno na tri, četiri, četrnaest, ili sesnaest teritorijalno-hijerarhijske nadleznosti (ovisno o načinu računanja: jedna drzava, dva entiteta, jedan autonomni distrikt, sest unitarnih kantona, i dva  mjesovita  kantona); BiH također ima tri odvojena zakonodavstva, od kojih su dva prepuna kontradiktornih odredbi. Ta fragmentacija predstavlja blagoslov za kriminalce a zamku za eventualne reformatore i one koji provode zakon.

Diskontinuitet teritorijalne strukture zavjestane Daytonskim mirovnim sporazumom dodatno je potaknut mjesovitim zakonodavnim nasljeđem u Bosni  i Hercegovini. Zakoni sadrze mnostvo zastarjelih, dupliciranih i nedosljednih zakona iz prijeratnog, ratnog i poslijeratnog perioda. Njih primjenjuju (ili ne primjenjuju) sudovi koji su isuvise brojni, isuvise skupi, isuvise neefikasni, i isuvise izlozeni političkim  uticajima.

Odlazak pravnih stručnjaka iz zemlje, koji je počeo u ratu, danas se nastavlja. To je, zajedno sa 'politički korektnim' imenovanjima koja preovladavaju u cijeloj zemlji, znači da nekoliko izvrsnih organa u zemlji ima kontrolu kako nad misljenjima sudija tako i nad njihovim novčanicima. Sudovi jednostavno  nisu  u prilici da se odupru bilo moći izvrsnih organa bilo iskusenjima nacionalne solidarnosti.

I domaći pravni stručnjaci i međunarodni zvaničnici već dugo su svjesni disfunkcionalne prirode pravnog i pravosudnog sistema BiH. Ured visokog predstavnika (Office of the High Representative - OHR), Misija Ujedinjenih nacija u Bosni i Hercegovini (United Nations Mission in Bosnia & Herzegovina - UNMIBH), Organizacija za sigurnost  i saradnju u Evropi (Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe - OSCE), Nezavisna sudska komisija (Independent Judicial Commission - IJC), i razne nevladine organizacije redovno ističu vaznost koju pridaju centralnoj ulozi vladavine zakona i svoju predanost postizanju tog cilja.

No, samo priznavanje problema i svijest o njegovim katastrofalnim posljedicama nisu doveli do usvajanja i primjene odgovarajućeg lijeka. Nije pokrenut dosljedni, koordinirani i sveobuhvatni program pravosudnih i pravnih reformi. Ustvari, napori međunarodne zajednice uglavnom su bili malodusni, postepeni, djelomični i nepovezani, sto je dovelo do dugih odlaganja, gubitka institucionalne memorije, i pokretanja uvijek novih reformi. Međunarodne organizacije su trazile brza rjesenja za sistematske probleme. Saga "sveobuhvatne" provjere pravosuđa, od koje se sada odustalo, najtuzniji je primjer toga.

Ponavljajući barem dio međunarodnih optuzbi, bosanskohercegovački organi vlasti i političari nikad ne propustaju priliku da kritiziraju ispolitizirano i nedjelotvorno pravosuđe u zemlji, i da ga krive za  sve moguće bolesti drustva. Pa ipak, oni nisu pristali da sudije i tuzioce oslobode političkih manipulacija i pretvore pravosuđe u neovisni oslonac pravne drzave. Umjesto toga, političke stranke odrzavaju poslusno pravosuđe u zivotu, nastojeći da uvijek imenuju svoje 'dobre' sudije umjesto 'losih' sudija drugih stranaka, protiveći se daljem 'sramoćenju' zbog prisustva stranih sudija u bosanskohercegovačkim sudovima, a osiguravajući da njihove diskrecione ovlasti u dijeljenju pravde ostanu netaknute.

Međunarodna zajednica konačno je, sa zakasnjenjem, uspostavi vladavine dala onaj prioritet koji ona i zasluzuje. Očekuje se da će u prvoj sedmici aprila Visoki predstavnik oformiti novo Visoko pravosudno vijeće na drzavnom nivou. Taj korak vjerovatno će biti propraćen ubrzanim donosenjem ili nametanjem paketa od neka 52 zakona o pravnoj i pravosudnoj reformi. Ta nova inicijativa vjerovatno predstavlja posljednju priliku za fundamentalnu reformu. Sada i Bosanci i stranci moraju pokazati na ozbiljnu i dugoročnu predanost reformi, ako se zeli da se kompleksne pravosudne i zakonske mjere, koje su od sustinske vaznosti za vladavinu zakona, provedu dok je međunarodna zajednica jos uvijek tu i od pomoći.

Sve veća kompleksnost i sveprisutnost međukantonalnih, međuentitetskih i međudrzavnih kriminalnih mreza; zakonski izazovi koje postavlja ekonomija u tranziciji; potreba za odrzavanjem suđenja u hiljadama slučajeva ratnih zločina u zemlji; sve manje interesovanje međunarodne zajednice za BiH; te sve veći pritisak da se ispostuju zakonski standardi i ljudska prava, sto je preduvjet za predstojeće priključenje BiH Vijeću Evrope i drugim evropskim tijelima - sve to ukazuje na neodrzivost trenutnog haosa koji vlada u zakonodavstvu i u pravosuđu. No sve to govori i o neadekvatnim pristupima reformi koje je međunarodna zajednica imala u proslosti, i zadrzali u sadasnjosti.

Ukoliko se zeli da u Bosni i Hercegovini vlada zakon a ne samovolja - da ni ne pominjemo njen put ka članstvu u Evropskoj uniji - onda odgovorne međunarodne organizacije (a prije svega OHR i IJC)  i bosanski pravnici i političari treba da razmotre dolje navedene preporuke te da reforme provedu na koordiniran, koherentan i konsistentan način, imajući na umu pouke iz Brčkog. Nedavna odluka Vijeća za implementaciju mira (Peace Implementation Council- PIC) da odustane od procesa provjere sudija, prioritet koji je vladavini zakona dao Visoki predstavnik, kao i njegov već imenovani nasljednik i barem neki od domaćih lidera, ohrabrujući su znaci da bi se sa ovim izazovima konačno moglo suočiti.

Sarajevo/Brussels, 25. mart 2002.

Executive Summary

The law does not yet rule in Bosnia & Herzegovina.  What prevail instead are nationally defined politics, inconsistency in the application of law, corrupt and incompetent courts, a fragmented judicial space, half-baked or half-implemented reforms, and sheer negligence. Bosnia is, in short, a land where respect for and confidence in the law and its defenders is weak.

Bosnians are unequal before the law, and they know it. Exercise of the legal rights to repossess property or to reclaim a job too often depends on an individual’s national identity – or that of the judge before whom she or he appears.  Even when citizens do get justice in the courts, the chances of having decisions enforced can be slim, since the execution of court orders is often prolonged unlawfully or hedged in arbitrary conditions.  Obtaining justice is also subject to geographical chance. War crimes in one entity or canton are still hailed as acts of heroism in another.

Ethnicity and geography are not the only brakes on justice.  An individual’s position in or relationship to one or another national-political elite also counts.  Punishing the powerful and the well connected for milking public coffers or appropriating public goods – whether in the name of the ‘national cause’ or for private gain – remains virtually unknown.  Although allegations of corruption in high places appear in the newspapers every day, and formal investigations are nearly as common, not a single past or present national party leader has yet been convicted and sent to prison.

Unlike for the majority of law-abiding Bosnians, national discrimination and ‘ethnic justice’ do not apply to smugglers, racketeers, tax evaders, gunrunners, drug dealers, white slavers, and their patrons. These groups rejoice in what remains of old Yugoslavia’s “brotherhood and unity”, doing business across internal and external borders and national or confessional divides.  Their community of interest – in getting rich and defying the law – contrasts with the disunity of those who want to uphold the law.

Not only is Bosnia divided juridically into three, four, fourteen, or sixteen territorial-hierarchical jurisdictions (depending on how the one state, two entities, one autonomous district, eight unitary cantons, and two mixed cantons are counted); it also has three separate sets of laws, two of which are replete with contradictory provisions.  This fragmentation is a boon to criminals and a pitfall for would-be reformers and enforcers of the law.

The discontinuity of the territorial structure bequeathed by the Dayton Peace Accords is compounded by Bosnia’s mixed legislative inheritance.  The statute books contain a multitude of outdated, overlapping and inconsistent laws from the pre-war, wartime and post-war periods.  They are applied (or not) by courts which are too numerous, too expensive, too inefficient, and too vulnerable to political influence.

The brain drain of legal talent that accompanied the war continues today.  This, coupled with the ‘politically correct’ appointments that have prevailed throughout, means that the country’s several executive authorities wield influence over judges’ minds as well as their purses. The courts are simply in no position to resist either the power of the executive or the temptations of national solidarity.

The dysfunctional nature of Bosnia’s legal and judicial system has been long apparent to both domestic legal experts and international officials. The Office of the High Representative (OHR), the United Nations Mission in Bosnia & Herzegovina (UNMIBH), the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), the Independent Judicial Commission (IJC), and various NGOs have regularly reiterated both their keen appreciation of the centrality of the rule of law and their commitment to establishing it.

But this recognition of the problem and an appreciation of its dire consequences have not led to the adoption and implementation of adequate remedies. There has been no coherent, coordinated and thoroughgoing program of judicial and legal reform.  Rather, international efforts have typically been timorous, incremental, piecemeal and disjointed, leading to long delays, the loss of institutional memory and periodic re-launches of reform schemes.  In particular, international agencies have sought quick fixes for systemic problems.  The saga of the now abandoned program of “comprehensive” judicial review is the most depressing case in point.

As a consequence, millions of dollars have been spent since 1996 by an assortment of international agencies to promote the rule of law in Bosnia, including hefty salaries for over 200 foreign legal experts who have worked to improve the performance of Bosnia’s 1,200 judges and prosecutors.  In comparison to the sums expended, the results achieved have been pitiful. Brcko District, in northern Bosnia, is the positive exception to the general sorry record, and proves that successful reform is possible.

Parroting at least part of the international community’s charge sheet, Bosnia’s governments and politicians never fail to take an opportunity to castigate their country’s politicised and ineffectual judiciary, blaming it for all manner of societal ills.   Yet they have refused to free judges and prosecutors of political manipulation and make the judiciary an independent pillar of a lawful state. Rather, the political parties keep the judiciary obedient by seeking always to appoint their own ‘good’ judges in place of other parties’ ‘bad’ ones, railing against the continuing indignity of foreign judges on Bosnian benches, and ensuring their own discretionary powers in the distribution of justice remain intact.

Now, belatedly, the international community is giving the establishment of the rule of law the priority it deserves. The High Representative is expected to create a new, state-wide High Judicial Council in the first week of April. This step will likely be followed by the swift passage or imposition of a package of some 52 laws on legal and judicial reform. This new initiative probably represents the last chance for fundamental reform. A new, serious and long-term commitment by Bosnians and foreigners alike is required if the complex judicial and legal measures essential to the rule of law are to be implemented while the international community is still on hand to help.

The increasing complexity and ubiquity of cross-cantonal, cross-entity and cross-border criminal networks; the legal challenges posed by a transition economy; the need to try thousands of war crimes cases in the country; the faltering interest of the international community in Bosnia; and the increased pressure to uphold legal standards and human rights posed by Bosnia’s imminent membership of the Council of Europe and other European bodies – all point to the unsustainability of the current legal and judicial disorder.  But they also testify to the inadequacy of past and present international approaches to reform.

If Bosnia is to be ruled by laws and not by wilful men, let alone to progress towards European Union membership, then the responsible international agencies (above all OHR and the IJC) and Bosnian jurists and politicians should consider the following recommendations and undertake reforms in a coordinated, coherent and consistent manner, applying the lessons drawn from Brcko.  The recent decision of the Peace Implementation Council (PIC) to scrap peer review of judges and the priority now being accorded to rule of law issues by the High Representative, his designated successor and at least some Bosnian leaders are encouraging signs that the challenge may finally be confronted.

Sarajevo/Brussels, 25 March 2002

Changing Dynamics in the Western Balkans

This week on War & Peace, Olga Oliker talks to Crisis Group expert Marko Prelec about the precarious situation in the Western Balkans, as Serb separatism in Bosnia and Herzegovina, and the frozen Kosovo-Serbia dispute continue to stoke regional instability.

The Western Balkans, a region defined in part by not being in the European Union, also contains several countries that were devastated by war in the 1990s. Now it faces new troubles, driven in part by the legacies of the old. Bosnia and Herzegovina is confronted with calls for secession in the autonomous Serb-dominated region, Republika Srpska, as well as the ongoing electoral grievances of its Croat minority. Meanwhile, efforts to resolve Kosovo’s dispute with Serbia over its independence have come to a standstill, leaving minority communities on both sides of the border vulnerable.

This week on War & Peace, Olga Oliker talks to Marko Prelec, Crisis Group’s Consulting Senior Analyst for the Balkans, about why ethnic tensions persist in the region and whether there is any risk of a return to conflict. They discuss the prospects for European integration, asking whether the promise of EU membership remains an effective incentive for resolving these longstanding disputes. They also consider what impact Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has had for stability in the Western Balkans, a region where painful memories of war are still very salient today.



Click here to listen on Apple Podcasts or Spotify.

For more of Crisis Group’s analysis, make sure to check out our Balkans regional page and keep an eye out for our upcoming report on the risk of instability in the Western Balkans.

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