“Bosnian Serb leaders have held the biggest celebrations ever to mark the Day Of Republika Srpska, a disputed “statehood day” in the Bosnian Serb entity that has been banned by Bosnia-Herzegovina’s Constitutional Court.
Events on January 9 in Banja Luka, the administrative center of the Bosnian Serb entity, included a parade with hundreds of police officers armed with automatic weapons, firefighters, prison guards, war veterans, and members of sport clubs and the Civil Protection force.
Republika Srpska’s nationalist leader, President Milorad Dodik, used the occasion to call for more Serb autonomy within Bosnia.
‘The Serb people have two states — Serbia and Republika Srpska — and we want to be one,’ said Dodik, who has repeatedly claimed that the Serbs’ long-term goal is secession from the rest of Bosnia.
The January 9 holiday marks the date in 1992 when the Bosnian Serbs declared the founding of Republika Srpska.” (RFERL)