The Struggle for Visibility and Equality: Bosnian LGBT Rights
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In 1995, the Dayton Peace Accords (DPA) brought an end to the entrenched three-year war in Bosnia-Herzegovina (hereafter ‘Bosnia’ or ‘BiH’) and set the stage for the construction of a new state that was to be based on the rule of law, democracy, and human rights. As the narrative is now familiar, while the DPA supported and created relative peace and better human rights protections, it has not been able to create a civic identity, a well-functioning state or democracy, or the strong implementation of human rights. The Dayton constitution has (along with informal state and societal practices) institutionalized ethno-national identities and representation in a way that is keenly felt today in almost all areas of Bosnian political life (Mujkić 2008). During the late 1990s and early 2000s, Bosnian political elites and the international community were focused not on minority rights, but instead on immediate security concerns, rebuilding the economy and country, creating a functioning state, and capturing and prosecuting war criminals. Especially since 2006, elites have been unable and/or unwilling to compromise and reform the political and electoral system in line with European Union (EU) expectations and requirements. However, the recent coming into force of the Stabilization and Association Agreement (SAA) with the EU may signal a change.
KeywordsEuropean Union Sexual Minority Hate Crime Hate Speech Civil Society Actor
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