Bosnia and Herzegovina


Bosnia and Herzegovina is a federal parliamentary republic in the Western Balkans, bordering Montenegro, Croatia and Serbia. The capital is Sarajevo. The total population is approximately 3.2 million.

Until 1992, it was part of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Following the referendum for independence, Bosnia was caught up in the conflict that erupted between the other former states of Yugoslavia. Until 1995, it was affected by violent clashes, reprisals and violations of human rights and humanitarian law, which also led to the involvement of NATO. In 1995, Bosnia and Herzegovina became independent and assumed its current institutional set-up.

Also due to the multi-ethnic and multi-religious composition of its population, during the years of the Balkan Wars, Bosnia was shattered by acts and clashes of particular ferocity: above all, the Srebrenica massacre remains one of the most painful events. The majority of the population is Muslim, of Bosnian ethnicity (about 50% of the population), while the inhabitants of Serbian ethnicity, and of predominantly Christian Orthodox religion, are about 30%. The remaining 15% are Croats of the Catholic religion and a small remainder of other ethnicities.

As a result of this ethnic mosaic, there are three official languages in the country: Serbian, Croatian and Bosnian, and even at the institutional level, the Presidency of the Republic itself is a collegial body composed of three representatives, each representing one of the constituent peoples.

At the current time, Bosnia and Herzegovina is a country still troubled by ethnic-religious tensions, which is trying to continue in a process of modernisation and rapprochement with Europe. In fact, in 2007, it signed the Stabilisation and Association Agreement with the European Union, the first step towards European integration, which started a long and complex process of institutional and political reforms to achieve the necessary objectives to meet the conditions for EU membership. On 15 December 2022, the European Council finally granted Bosnia and Herzegovina candidate status for EU membership.