11 October 2005
Gerald Knaus at Public Hearing in the European Parliament: The Dayton Agreement - Ten years after

ESI President Gerald Knaus was invited to hold a presentation at a Public Hearing organised by the Committee on Foreign Affairs of the European parliament in Brussels. Under the title "The Dayton Agreement - Ten years after", the Hearing was to reconsider the constitutional set-up of Bosnia-Herzegovina, assess its sustainability in the medium an long term and, finally, reflect on possible developments in the light of the current political context and in view of Bosnia Herzegovina's European aspirations.

The Hearing was chaired by Elmar Brok, chair of the Committee on Foreign Affairs. Participants included Mladen Ivanic (Bosnian Secretary of State), Seada Palavric (Vice President of the SDA party), Martin Raguz (Deputy Speaker of the Bosnian Parliamentry Assembly), Sumantra Bose (LSE), Jakob A. Finci (Association Bosnia and Herzegovina 2005) and Gerald Knaus.

Mr Knaus spoke on the evolution of ESI's perception of the situation in Bosnia Herzegovina since we released our study "Making Federalism Work – A Radical proposal for Practical Reform". In this study, ESI advocated to progressively abolish the Federation, and with it the constitutional category of "Entity". The result would be a simplified, three-layered federal state with twelve autonomous units: the ten cantons of the current Federation, Republika Srpska and the District of Brcko. This would represent a fundamental change to the structure of the state, turning it into a normal, European federal system with central, regional and municipal governments.

While in Brussels, Mr Knaus gave an interview to SEE TV on issues of European enlargement with special regard to Turkey and the countries of the Western Balkans. In a second interview, SEE TV spoke to Mr Knaus for a special documentary on Kosovo. The Bosnian TV station BHT1 also made an interview that was broadcast the same day.