Bosnian Election Has Implications for Country’s EU Membership Bid

Bosnian
ANDREJ ISAKOVIC/AFP/Getty Images

BANJA LUKA, Bosnia-Herzegovina (AP) – Polls have opened in Bosnia for a general election that could install a pro-Russian nationalist to a top post and cement ethnic divisions drawn in a brutal war more than 20 years ago.

Sunday’s vote is seen as a test of whether Bosnia will move toward integration in the European Union and NATO or remain entrenched in war-era rivalries.

Some 3.3 million people are eligible to vote for an array of institutions in Bosnia’s complex governing system, which was created by accords that ended the war after 100,000 people died and millions were left homeless.

The country consists of a Serb and a Muslim-Croat entity joined in a central government. Voters are casting ballots for the Bosnian presidency, the Serb president, common and the two entities’ parliaments and cantonal authorities.

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