Bosnian Croats talk "federal entity"

BANJA LUKA -- President of Croat Democratic Union (HDZ) in Bosnia Dragan Čović says his compatriors wanted a Croat federal entity.

The center for this entity would be in the town of Mostar, he said.

The post-war Bosnia is made up of the Serb entity (RS), and the Muslim-Croat federation, itself sub-divided into cantons.

During the 1992-95 war, Bosnia's Croats had formed the so-called Herzeg-Bosnia.

“We want to live in Bosnia-Herzegovina where Croats will be equal to the other two peoples according to the Constitution,” Čović said, stating that he would put forward his Croat federal entity demand in the negotiations about constitutional changes.

He explained that he viewed this demand "as a minimum".

The HDZ in Bosnia leader repeated this position on Tuesday after signing a strategic partnership with the Croat Christian Democratic Union (HKDU).

The HKDU leader, Ivan Musa, who is known precisely for his requests to form a third federal unit in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and for his attempts to revive Herzeg-Bosnia.

Speaking about the agreement that he had signed with HDZ, Musa said that it concerned the strengthening of the Croati political scene ahead of the Constitution negotiations.

“We have clearly recognized all those who are against this, because it is our opinion that everybody who is against a Croat federal entity is in fact against Bosnia-Herzegovina,” the HKDU president pointed out.

Čović confirmed that he had told the High Representative Valentine Inzko last night about his opinion that the mayor of Mostar – a city with tensions between its Bosniak (Bosnian Muslim) and Croat residents - should be Croat.

"I think this is the reality,“ he said.

When asked whether he would respond to the invitation from the leader of the Party of Democratic Action (SDA), Sulejman Tihić, to attend a meeting on distribution of key positions on the state level, Čović said that he would "never respond to someone who had already set the agenda and made the proposal about the distribution of key positions in a written invitation".