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Role of Agreement on Sub-Regional Arms Control in building confidence in Western Balkans

 

The achievements of the Agreement on Sub-Regional Arms Control were discussed in the meeting of the Forum for Security Co-operation on 25 October 2017 in Vienna. The Agreement has served as a framework for Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Montenegro and Serbia to engage with each other to promote peace and stability in the region.

 

Branimir Filipović, Assistant Minister for Security Policy in Serbia’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs, noted that the Agreement is “a strong contributing factor in the context of the consolidation of reconciliation, security and stability in the region”. He also added that it represents “a successful model of post-conflict rehabilitation, prominent as one applicable to other regions in conflict resolution, on condition that the parties involved in a particular process show readiness to engage in its implementation”.

 

Filipović said that achievements under the arms control regime are due, first of all, to the political will of the Parties to reach the goals defined in the Agreement. He also highlighted the significant role played by the OSCE and the support provided by the Contact Group countries, the United States, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Italy. These countries, which share the status of verifier, continue to monitor the Agreement’s implementation.

 

The framework for negotiating the Agreement on Sub-Regional Arms Control, signed in 1996, was provided by the Article IV, Annex 1-B of the Dayton Peace Accord. Hence it is also known as the Article IV Agreement. The Agreement’s core terms consist in the consent to limit arms for five categories of armaments including tanks, artillery guns (exceeding 75 mm calibre), armoured vehicles, fighter aircraft and attack helicopters.


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