Transitional Justice and Reconciliation in Bosnia and Herzegovina

Whilst Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) applies for EU membership as one country, it still appears divided along the lines of past conflicts, and it remains uncertain how to bridge the existing gaps on the way towards a peaceful joint future.

The project supported by the German Federal Foreign Office started in October 2018 and intends to facilitate a process during which representatives of all stakeholders concerned (BiH state and entity levels / Brčko district / civil society organisations) convene several times until the end of 2019 and discuss in a structured manner possible ways of developing a joint vision of how to address individual injustices of the past, and to establish a framework for a peaceful joint future.

As a starting point, the parties define the framework of the discussions by jointly selecting items of the BiH Draft Transitional Justice Strategy for further discussion and negotiation (topics include inter alia, truth telling, memoralisation, and victim support). The process aims at offering an impartial platform to discuss critical issues in a spirit of good will and in the shared interest of making a major contribution to a peaceful future in BiH. The governing principle is that all parties enter into this process completely voluntarily, based on the joint common denominator that building and preserving peace is in the interest of all current and future citizens of BiH, regardless of ethnicity, political affiliations, and other features that potentially divide society.

The Max Planck Foundation’s highest scientific standards as well as its reputation as a highly respected independent organisation guarantee a process based on voluntary, respectful, and free exchange. This will be confidential according to the involved parties’ preference and agreement, without any undue influence that may compromise the integrity of the process. The Foundation is mindful to maintain a non-political, non-partisan technical advisory role to support ambitions of creating sustainable future solutions.


German Foreign Office


1 October 2018 – 31 December 2019

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