Europe

US embassy in Sarajevo denies meddling in Bosnian election

Serb President Milorad Dodik accused the US and Britain of funding opposition groups in his territory

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 27 September, 2018, 8:24pm
UPDATED : Thursday, 27 September, 2018, 8:24pm

The US embassy in Bosnia-Herzegovina on Tuesday rejected accusations by Serb nationalist leaders that Washington is trying to interfere in next month’s general election.

The embassy said in a statement that “the United States is not interfering in the election process and we strongly reject such appalling accusations”.

Bosnian Serb President Milorad Dodik has accused the US and Britain of supporting his opponents and trying to influence the outcome of the October 7 vote. The election is seen as crucial indicator of whether the country, ravaged by a civil war in the 1990s, will join the European Union and Nato, or continue with bickering between its Serb, Muslim and Croat ethnic groups.

Dodik said on Thursday that the US and Britain have secured millions of euros to finance various opposition groups in the Bosnian Serb territory.

“I will insist that the foreign meddling stops,” Dodik said at a press conference.

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The US embassy condemned what it called “irresponsible actors” who “drag us into conspiracy theories, unfounded accusations, and, bluntly, lies”.

“We do not back one candidate or one party over another,” its statement said, adding that the US refuses to be part of pre-election “manipulation”.

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Dodik, who has advocated the secession of the Bosnian Serb autonomous regions and joining Serbia, is running for a Serb seat in Bosnia’s three-member presidency.