Sixty-two partner countries cooperate with each other within the framework of the European Union’s (EU) Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) Centres of Excellence (CoE) Initiative (EU CBRN CoE) since its start in 2010. Partner countries are encouraged to develop their CBRN National Strategies and National Action Plans (NAP), aimed to prioritize national activities in order to enhance their CBRN risks mitigation efforts. As of today, thirty-four countries have completed the process of developing their NAPs, which requires significant efforts from the CBRN National Team members. Bosnia and Herzegovina is one of these countries which have developed a CBRN Strategy and NAP for the duration of 5 years starting from 2018 to 2022.
The CBRN Coordination Body plays an important role in Bosnia and Herzegovina in the development of its CBRN Strategy and NAP. As the deadline of the National Action Plan is approaching, the Coordination Body plans to review the results so far achieved and identify future priorities. The CBRN National Focal Point, Mr. Bakir Sadovic. brought together members of his country’s CBRN Coordination Body to meet with Ms. Mari Ms. Lusrmanashvili, Head of the Secretariat for South East and Eastern Europe (SEEE) region; Mr. Talgat Toleubayev, the UNICRI’s Regional Coordinator and Mr. Jumber Mamasakhlisi, On-Site Technical Assistance Key Expert.
Twenty representatives of the CBRN National Team met together with representatives of the SEEE Regional Secretariat of the EU CBRN CoE. The Coordination Body consisted of the following governmental authorities of Bosnia and Herzegovina: the Ministry of Foreign Affairs the Ministry of Security, the Ministry of Defense, the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Economic Relations, the Ministry of Civil Affairs, the Ministry of Communications and Transport, the Indirect Taxation Authority, the Intelligence – Security Agency, the State Regulatory Agency for Radiation and Nuclear Safety, the Prosecutor's Office, the Government of Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Government of Republic Srpska, and the Government of Brcko District.
Participants received a very detailed overview of the EU CBRN CoE Initiative well as of the SEEE Regional Secretariat projects and activities, including related actions implemented by other international partners in parallel to the EU CBRN CoE Initiative. They were provided with a brief overview of the SEEE Regional Secretariat support possibilities to the National CBRN Risk Mitigation Team. An overview of the status of implementation of the National Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD) Non-Proliferation and CBRN Risk Mitigation Strategy and of the Action Plan (NAP) of Bosnia and Herzegovina were also presented.
The CBRN National Focal Point requested to support with the Review Meeting of their National Strategy and Action Plan in order to develop and extend its duration for an additional period of five years. The review meeting will be tentatively planned in June 2022 in close coordination with the host country and the SEEE Regional Secretariat. After the review and update of their previous CBRN National Strategy and Action Plan, the Regional Secretariat in close cooperation with the CBRN Coordination Body will organize the Donors Coordination Meeting in order to showcase their achievements and look for additional funding to implement the update plan.
The CBRN National Focal Point will also consider hosting the national training on CBRN Threat Assessment, which will be tailored to the needs and priorities of the country in the area of CBRN safety and security. If the situation with the COVID-19 gets better in 2022, this country will be able to host the NFP Round Table in-person meeting. The meeting may be tentatively scheduled in early 2022.
The CBRN NFP of Bosnia and Herzegovina highlighted the importance of his country’s participation in the Exchange of Good Practice visits within the framework of the CBRN CoE Initiative. This opportunity will allow members of the Coordination Body to learn about the achievements in neighboring countries and to exchange good practices. He will prepare the official request to the SEEE Regional Secretariat about these visits to be discussed during regional meetings.
The country visit concluded with a discussion of complementary activities, parallel initiatives and ongoing projects with relevant international partners. Bilateral meetings were organized with the European Union’s Delegation in Bosnia and Herzegovina, the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), the U.S. Embassy representative, and the International Committee of the Red Cross.