Bosnia clears key hurdle for visa-free travel to EU
(SARAJEVO) - The Bosnian parliament on Wednesday extended a mandate for a head of the anti-corruption agency, clearing a key hurdle for Bosnian nationals to apply for visa-free travel to the European Union.
"Bosnia-Herzegovina has removed the last condition (needed) for liberalisation of the visa regime," said parliament chairwoman Dusanka Majkic following an assembly session.
She said she expected that some 3.8 million citizens of Bosnia "will be able to travel to Europe this year."
The decision came ahead of a debate in a key European parliament committee on Thursday on whether Bosnia has satisfied all conditions for removing EU visa requirments for its citizens, Bosnia's Security Minister Sadik Ahmetovic said.
"I think that (the committee) will adopt a positive report, which will later be sent to the European parliament and (EU) Council of Ministers," Ahmetovic told AFP.
He expected that the decision to lift visas for Bosnian citizens could be made "in October."
"I expect that Bosnian citizens will be allowed to travel to EU without visas this autumn, if there are no serious problems," Ahmetovic said.
Last December the EU lifted visa requirments for Schengen zone for Bosnia's neighbours Serbia and Montenegro and Macedonia, also former Yugoslav republics.