Bosnian Serbs award Putin with medal of honor

Jan 7, 2023, 5:23 PM | Updated: Jan 8, 2023, 8:20 am
The highest decoration of the Republika Srpska, Order of the Republika Srpska assigned to Russian P...

The highest decoration of the Republika Srpska, Order of the Republika Srpska assigned to Russian President Vladimir Putin is seen during a ceremony in the Bosnian town of Banja Luka, 240 kms northwest of Sarajevo, Sunday, Jan. 8, 2023. The Bosnian Serb separatist leader has awarded Putin with the highest medal of honor for his "patriotic concern and love" for the Serb-controlled half of Bosnia. Dodik awarded Putin on the occasion of "the day of Republika Srpska" which has been proclaimed illegal by Bosnia's constitutional court. It marks the day when Bosnian Serbs proclaimed they are splitting from Bosnia in 1992 with the aim to separate the Serb-populated regions of the Balkan state and join them with Serbia. (AP Photo/Radivoje Pavicic)

(AP Photo/Radivoje Pavicic)

SARAJEVO, Bosnia-Herzegovina (AP) — The Bosnian Serb separatist leader on Sunday awarded Russian President Vladimir Putin with the highest medal of honor for his “patriotic concern and love” for the Serb-controlled half of Bosnia.

“Putin is responsible for developing and strengthening cooperation and political and friendly relations between RS (Republika Srpska) and Russia,” the Bosnian Serb president, Milorad Dodik, said at the awards ceremony in the Bosnian Serb stronghold of Banja Luka.

Dodik, who visited Putin in September in Moscow, has maintained close ties with the Russian president despite Russia’s war in Ukraine. The medal will be presented to Putin during the next meeting between the two, Russian Ambassador Igor Kalbukhov said.

“We believe that this award is an affirmation of the strategic determination of our relations aimed at strengthening the friendship of our brotherly people,” he said at the ceremony.

Moscow has often been accused by the West of seeking to destabilize Bosnia and the rest of the Balkans through its proxies in Serbia and Bosnia. Dodik has openly advocated tearing away the Serb-controlled half of Bosnia from a Bosniak-Croat federation to join it up with neighboring Serbia.

A U.S.-brokered peace deal in 1995 ended a war in Bosnia that left at least 100,000 people dead and millions homeless, but left the country deeply divided between its three main ethnic groups. Moscow has been exploiting the divisions by tacitly supporting Dodik’s separatist policies.

Dodik awarded Putin on the occasion of “the day of Republika Srpska,” which has been deemed illegal by Bosnia’s constitutional court. It marks the day when Bosnian Serbs proclaimed they were splitting from Bosnia in 1992 with the aim of separating the Serb-populated regions of the Balkan state and join them up with Serbia.

Tensions were running high in Bosnia as the Serbs planned to hold their main celebrations on the outskirts of Sarajevo on Monday, the town they held under siege for three years during the war. Thousands of people were killed in the relentless shelling and sniping of the Bosnian capital.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Paul Njoroge, right, points to photos of his wife and three children that were killed in the 2019 c...
Associated Press

Boeing pleads not guilty in case over deadly Max crashes

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — Boeing pleaded not guilty Thursday to a charge that it misled regulators who approved its 737 Max, the plane that was involved in two crashes that killed 346 people. Family members of passengers who died gave emotional testimony, calling for criminal prosecution of top Boeing officials. The families are trying […]
21 hours ago
abortion Capital gains tax Olympia meeting legislature abortion...
Associated Press

Washington lawmakers hear testimony on 7 abortion bills

Abortion rights proposals have been front and center in Olympia, Washington, this week as state lawmakers heard hours of public testimony on seven proposals that would reinforce abortion access.
21 hours ago
FILE - A pumpjack as seen on Wednesday, March 30, 2022, in Tatum, New Mexico. For the second time t...
Associated Press

House GOP seeks new restrictions on use of US oil stockpile

WASHINGTON (AP) — For the second time this month, House Republicans are seeking to restrict presidential use of the nation’s emergency oil stockpile — a proposal that has already drawn a White House veto threat. A GOP bill set for a vote Friday would require the government to offset any non-emergency withdrawals from the Strategic […]
21 hours ago
Associated Press

Today in History: JAN 27, Auschwitz and Birkenau liberated

Today in History Today is Friday, Jan. 27, the 27th day of 2022. There are 338 days left in the year. Today’s Highlight in History: On Jan. 27, 1967, astronauts Virgil I. “Gus” Grissom, Edward H. White and Roger B. Chaffee died in a flash fire during a test aboard their Apollo spacecraft. On this […]
21 hours ago
A building burns amid anti-government protests in downtown Lima, Peru, Thursday, Jan. 19, 2023. Pro...
Associated Press

AP Week in Pictures: Latin America and Caribbean

Jan. 20-26, 2023 This photo gallery highlights some of the most compelling images made or published by Associated Press photographers in Latin America and the Caribbean. It was curated by AP photo editor Leslie Mazoch in Mexico City. Follow AP visual journalism: Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/apnews AP Images on Twitter: http://twitter.com/AP_Images AP Images blog: http://apimagesblog.com Copyright © […]
21 hours ago
Research and development engineer Ravneet Kailey performs an experiment to produce steel without us...
Associated Press

US company gets $120 million boost to make ‘green steel’

The manufacture of “green steel” moved one step closer to reality Friday as Massachusetts-based Boston Metal announced a $120 million investment from the world’s second-largest steelmaker, ArcelorMittal. Boston Metal will use the injection of funds to expand production at a pilot plant in Woburn, near Boston, and help launch commercial production in Brazil. The company […]
21 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.
Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.
SHIBA WA...

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Bosnian Serbs award Putin with medal of honor