Bosnia: NATO Chief Concerned About Secessionist Rhetoric, Russian Influence

    Bosnia: NATO Chief Concerned About Secessionist Rhetoric, Russian Influence
    Photo: Thierry Monasse/Getty Images News via Getty Images

    The Facts

    • NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg warned about risks for Bosnia-Herzegovina from secessionist rhetoric and foreign interference, particularly from Russia as Bosnian Serb leaders have increasingly expressed their intent to split away and join neighboring Serbia. The remarks came on Monday.

    • Stoltenberg, who is on a two-day visit to Sarajevo in a Balkan tour, further reasserted the alliance's commitment to the stability and security in the country and the region, as well as to Bosnia's sovereignty and territorial integrity.


    The Spin

    Establishment-critical narrative

    It's the West, particularly the US, that has been pushing Bosnia's Republika Srpska for independence, as Washington insists on old imperialist tricks to bully pro-Russian politicians and to force them to recognize a non-approved high example in Sarajevo that has sought to empower a central government.

    Pro-establishment narrative

    Tensions across the Balkans have recently mounted to the brink of a military confrontation, as Russia has resorted to its longtime ally Serbia to open another front in Europe and test Western commitment to that region. Though many NATO allies may want not to divert focus from Ukraine by now, a swift decisive action to address ongoing crises in the Balkans is needed to prevent further problems and costs.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 10% chance that more than 500 combatants will die as a result of an armed conflict in the Balkans by 2025, according to the Metaculus prediction community.


    Establishment split

    CRITICAL

    PRO

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