SARAJEVO, February 25 (FENA) – The celebration of the Independence Day of Bosnia and Herzegovina, marked on March 1, is an opportunity to remember the key period in 1992, when the state of Bosnia and Herzegovina confirmed its historical and statehood continuity, gaining independence, sovereignty and international recognition.
This was pointed out today at a roundtable organized by the University of Sarajevo (UNSA) on the occasion of the Independence Day of Bosnia and Herzegovina, where participants of the panel elaborated on various aspects and significance of the referendum held on February 29 and March 1, 1992, when citizens opted for an independent, autonomous and integral BiH, as a state of equal citizens and peoples. They also talked about other repercussions and what followed after this historical event.
At the same time, the participants of the event underlined our obligation to nurture the values and content confirmed by the referendum, as well as the necessity to persevere in the further development of BiH for the benefit of all its peoples and citizens, in the context of current priorities oriented towards implementing constitutional and other reforms necessary on the country’s Euro-Atlantic path.
The Rector of the University of Sarajevo (UNSA) prof. dr. Rifat Škrijelj on this occasion paid tribute to all those who contributed to the defense of Bosnia and Herzegovina in various ways by defending its statehood and its legal continuity.
“The University of Sarajevo will never forget the multiethnic and multicultural character of BiH society in which, and in every situation, all citizens must be equal on every inch of BiH territory,” said Škrijelj, subliming the message of the academic community.
In the context of the socio-political and historical importance of the Independence Day of the state of Bosnia and Herzegovina, academician Mirko Pejanović reminded of the importance of the 1992 citizens’ referendum and its crucial importance for the future development of the Bosnian statehood.
He pointed to key events that contributed to building the capacity of BiH as a state, before and after the dissolution of the former SFRY, and the challenges facing the new government after the first multi-political party elections in 1990, including blockades by the then Serb Democratic Party (SDS) led by Radovan Karadžić.
Pejanović especially emphasized the importance of passing the Decision on holding a referendum of citizens in order to declare the sovereign and independent status of the state of BiH, which resulted in the acquisition of international subjectivity of BiH and its recognition by the European Union, the United States and other countries and membership in the United Nations on May 22, 1992.
He assessed that the high turnout and positive voting of BiH citizens in the referendum testified to their awareness of their country’s statehood, as well as the united will for their country to gain full statehood status and to follow the tradition of anti-fascism through which BiH emerged as a federal state unit in SFRY.
The Independence Day of Bosnia and Herzegovina is a national holiday celebrated on March 1, marking the referendum held on February 29 and March 1, 1992, in which BiH citizens opted for a sovereign and independent Bosnia and Herzegovina, a state of equal citizens and peoples.
The referendum for the independence of Bosnia and Herzegovina was held on the recommendation of the then Arbitration Commission of the International Conference on Yugoslavia, in the final phases of the dissolution of the former SFRY.
A total of 2,073,568 voters took to the referendum, representing a turnout of 63.6 percent. Of those who went to the polls, 99.7 percent voted for independence.
The results of the referendum were accepted on March 6 of the same year in the Parliament of the then Federal Republic of Bosnia and Herzegovina.