Vice-Minister of Justice and Deputy President of the Judicial Council

From 23 to 27 March 2014, Srdjan Radulj, Vice Minister of Justice of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Jadranka Lokomic-Misiraca, Deputy President of the High Council of Judges and Public Prosecutors of Bosnia and Herzegovina, came on a working visit to Berlin organised by the IRZ, together with further multipliers from different fields of the Bosnian-Herzegovinian legal system. The comprehensive programme included expert talks at the Federal Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection (BMJV), the Bundesrat, the German Association of Judges and the Higher Administrative Court of Berlin and Brandenburg amongst others.

These talks aimed at getting to know the structure of the judicial system and the legislative competences in the federal system of the Federal Republic of Germany. This can be an inspiration for creating a more efficient judicial system in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The insights gained in Berlin will be discussed and followed up in the "Forum for Joint Policy" (FJP). The FJP is a working group dealing with the harmonisation of the activities of the Ministries of Justice at the different levels in Bosnia and Herzegovina as well as the High Council of Judges and Public Prosecutors of Bosnia and Herzegovina.

This working visit, which took place under the headline "Cooperation and Coordination of the Justice Sector Institutions in the State with a Complex Structure", was part of the activities of the American organisation USAID within the programme "Justice Sector Development Project II". USAID had commissioned the IRZ with the implementation of this measure upon the successful participation in a respective invitation to tender.

The BMJV, in particular by Dr Ivo Thiemrodt and Dr Stephanie Krüger (INT-COR: International Legal Cooperation; Rule of Law Dialogues), supported the IRZ in the preparation of the visit. Presentations were furthermore given at the BMJV by Ministerialdirigent Dr Matthias Korte, Ministerialrat Dr Host Heitland, Regierungsdirektor Dr Tim Sporrer, Desk Officer in the Division "Organisation", Dr Meik Lange, Ministerialrätin Sabine Hilgendorf-Schmidt, Public Prosecutor Dr Aleksander Müller-Teckhof and Erik Christl, Judge at the Regional Court. Claudia Keller represented the German Association of Judges in her function as Deputy Director and attended the event at the BMJV, during which Lothar Jünemann, Judge at the Regional Court, gave a presentation. During the visit to the Higher Administrative Court of Berlin and Brandenburg, the former President of the Constitutional Court of the Federal State of Saxony-Anhalt, Dr Gerd-Heinrich Kemper, accompanied the delegation in his function as permanent expert. The President of the Higher Administrative Court, Joachim Buchheister, welcomed the delegation, followed by an expert talk with Dirk Marsch, Judge at the Higher Administrative Court. The programme ended with a reception by State Secretary (ret.) Lutz Diwell.

Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina: Conference dealing with the new Property Law

In early March 2014, the new Act relating to rights in rem has entered into effect in the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina, introducing, inter alia, the land charge along German lines. The Act furthermore removes many relicts from Socialism, which are replaced by regulations along German and/or Austrian lines. Two days after this Act had entered into effect on 7 March 2014, the IRZ organised the conference "The New Property Law in the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina" in cooperation with the Law Faculty of the University of Sarajevo and the Regional Austrian Cooperation Office in Science and Culture. This conference covered in particular the German, Austrian and Croatian experience with the new legal institutions of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. The international speakers were Andreas Luckow of Verband Deutscher Pfandbriefbanken in Berlin, Professor Dr. Tatjana Josipovic of the Law Faculty of the University of Zagreb and University Professor Mag. phil. Mag. Dr. iur. Tomislav Boric of the Law Faculty of the Karl Franzens University of Graz. Furthermore, the Director of the Open Regional Funds for South-East Europe, Legal Reform of GIZ, Mr Christian Athenstädt, gave an overview of the counselling given by his organisation in Bosnia and Herzegovina on the reform of the commercial law, in particular property law.

The representative of the German Embassy, Mr Christian Reissmueller, highlighted the good cooperation of different German organisations with their Austrian counterparts in his address. After all, this shows the high significance which these organisations attach to the setting-up of a system governed by the rule of law in the country. All speakers emphasised the importance of the Act, however, they also pointed out that this Act should have been adopted years before. The event which also generated broad media coverage is another milestone in the long-standing successful cooperation between the IRZ and the Law Faculty of Sarajevo.

“Days of German Law in Bosnia and Herzegovina”

Tag des Deutschen Rechts

Dean Prof. Dr. Milan Tomic giving his opening address on the "5th Day of German Law in Bosnia and Herzegovina"

The series of events headlined "Days of German Law in Bosnia and Herzegovina" celebrated an anniversary on 20 November 2013 as it now took place for the fifth time. Once a year it deals with issues relating to German law and its reception as well as European law and is organised by the IRZ in cooperation with the German-Bosnian-Herzegovinian Lawyers' Association BHJV as well as an alternating law faculty from one of the country's universities. After the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina had hosted the conference during the past years, this year's host was the Law Faculty of the University of the Republika Srpska. The topic of the event was the civil and public-law aspects of anti-discrimination law.

It was opened by the Dean Prof. Dr. Prof. Dr. Milan Tomic and the IRZ, followed by welcome addresses by the Permanent Representative of the German Embassy in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Mr. Adran Pollmann. He pointed out that this series of events illustrates the German bilateral support of the transformation of law in Bosnia and Herzegovina which has been provided for half a decade. The speakers were

  • Prof. Dr. Goran Markovic,
  • Prof. Dr Dijana Marković-Bajalović,
  • Prof. Dr. Ranka Račić,
  • Prof. Dr. Jasminka Gradaščević-Sjierčić
  • Prof. Dr. Meliha Povlakic,
  • Prof. Dr. Prof. Dr. Zlatan Meškić, Zenica,
  • as well as the bilingual German attorneys at law Dr. Karolina Mihaljevic-Schulz, Berlin, and Doc. Dr. Darko Samardžić, Hanover.

It was positively highlighted several times at the event that this event focused exclusively on legal aspects, whereas the anti-discrimination law in Bosnia and Herzegovina was mainly being discussed in a political context. This facilitated a factual discussion even of controversial topics among the participants, comprising law experts from all ethnic groups of the country. As the speakers were bilingual a spontaneous and direct discussion without the need for interpreters was possible.