The Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina
(Federacija Bosne i Hercegovine, ?????????? ????? ? ???????????,
listen (help·info)) is one of the two political entities
that compose the modern country of Bosnia and Herzegovina (the other
entity is the Republika Srpska). The two entities are delineated
by the Inter-Entity Boundary Line.
The Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina is primarily inhabited
by Bosniaks and Croats, which is why it is informally referred to
as the Bosniak-Croat Federation. However, by decision of the Constitutional
court in 2001, the Serbs were declared the third constituent ethnic
group of the Federation. The same happened to Bosniaks and Croats
in the Republika Srpska.
The Federation was created by the Washington accords signed on
March 18, 1994, which established a Constituent assembly (Ustavotvorna
skupština/Ustavotvorbeni Sabor). The Constituent assembly continued
its work until October 1996.
The Federation now has its own capital, government, flag and coat
of arms, president, parliament, customs and police departments,
postal system (in fact, two of them), and airline (BH Airlines).
It has its own army, the Vojska Federacije Bosne i Hercegovine,
though it is under the control of the state-level Bosnia-Herzegovina
Ministry of Defense, as is the Vojska Republike Srpske. Entity armies
(including Vojska Republike Srpske) should have been united by the
end of the 2005 and entity-level Ministry of Defense and their armies
should have been abolished by January 1, 2006. It now seems that
a unified army will be created by the end of 2007, although some
units have already been merged.
Map of the ethnic composition in BIH in early 1995, showing ethnic
composition and territory held by Bosnian government and Bosnian
Croat forces of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and 'Narodna
Odbrana / Peoples' defense' forces of 'Autonomous Province of Western
Bosnia'.The Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina was formed by the
Washington Agreement of May 1994. Under the agreement, the combined
territory held by the Croat and Armija RBiH forces was divided into
ten autonomous cantons. The cantonal system was selected to prevent
dominance by one ethnic group over another.
In 1995, Bosnian government forces and Bosnian Croat forces of
the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina defeated forces of the
'Autonomous Province of Western Bosnia', thus this area was also
included in Federation.
By the Dayton Agreement of 1995, the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina
was defined as one of the two entities of Bosnia and Herzegovina
and included 51% of the territory of Bosnia and Herzegovina (another
entity, Republika Srpska included 49%).
On March 8, 2000, the Brcko District was formed as an autonomous
entity within Bosnia and Herzegovina and it was created from part
of the territory of both Bosnian entities. Brcko District is now
a shared territory that belongs to both entities.
Discussions about the institutional future of Bosnia and Herzegovina
include several options, one of them favored by many Croats being
the possible creation of a third, Croatian entity within BIH.
Cantons of the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina.The Federation
of Bosnia and Herzegovina is divided into ten cantons (kanton or
Una-Sana, Unsko-Sanski Kanton
Posavina, Posavski Kanton
Tuzla, Tuzlanski Kanton
Zenica-Doboj, Zenicko-Dobojski Kanton
Bosnian Podrinje, Bosanskopodrinjski Kanton
Central Bosnia, Srednjebosanski Kanton
Herzegovina-Neretva, Hercegovacko-neretvanski Kanton
West Herzegovina, Zapadnohercegovacki kanton
Sarajevo, Kanton Sarajevo
Canton 10, Kanton 10.
Five of the cantons (Una-Sana, Tuzla, Zenica-Doboj, Bosnian Podrinje
and Sarajevo) are Bosniak majority cantons, three (Posavina, West
Herzegovina and Canton 10) are Croat majority cantons, and two (Central
Bosnia and Herzegovina-Neretva) are 'ethnically mixed', meaning
there are special legislative procedures for protection of the constituent
A significant portion of Brcko District was also part of the Federation;
however, when the district was created, it became shared territory
of both entities, but it was not placed under control of either
of the two, and is hence under direct jurisdiction of Bosnia-Herzegovina.
Currently the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina has 79 municipalities.
Largest cities in the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina.List
of the largest cities in Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina:
Note: the town of Brcko is part of the Brcko District, which is
part of both, Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina and Republika
Map of largest ethnic group for Bosnia and Herzegovina, 2006 municipality
BosniaksThe Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina comprises 51% of
the land area of Bosnia and Herzegovina, and is home to around 60%
of the country's total population. All data dealing with population,
including ethnic distributions, are subject to considerable error
because of the lack of official census figures.
In 1991, the population of the territory of present-day Federation
of Bosnia and Herzegovina numbered 2,757,888 inhabitants, including:
There is a President of the Federation, and two Vice-presidents
thereof, just like in Republika Srpska.
From 2003 until 2007 the president was Croat, Niko Lozancic of
the HDZ party, whereas both the Bosniak (Sahbaz Dihanovic)
and Serb (Desnica Radivojevic) Vice-presidents came from the SDA
The current President is Croat, Borjana Krišto (HDZ), the
Bosniak Vice-President is Mirsad Kebo (SDA) and the Serb Vice-President
is Spomenka Micic (SBiH).
The Cabinet has 16 members with carefully delineated nationality
quotas. There are 8 Bosniak, 5 Croat and 3 Serb ministers in the
current Government. The Prime minister from 2003 until 2007 was
a Bosniak, Ahmet Hadipašic of the SDA. As of March, 2007,
the prime minister is Nedad Brankovic, also Bosniak of the
The Parliament consists of two houses, the House of Representatives
and the House of Peoples. The House of Representatives is an elected
body of 98 MPs, whereas the House of Peoples consists of Representatives
delegated by the cantonal parliaments.
Interestingly, a number of institutions in the Federation still
function under the 'componental' system; there is a Croat postal
system and a Bosniak postal system, a Croat telecom and a Bosniak
telecom, a Croat army component and a Bosniak army component; however,
recently many systems have been merged into one single public company,
e.g. the pension system or the public broadcasting company of the
Federation. Each of the cantons also has broad-ranging authorities,
such as having its own courts and police forces.
Federation currently has its own entity police force. Police systems
including entity ministries of security of both entities are to
be united by 2010 into a new state-level Ministry of Security and
entity level police forces are to abolished and replaced with state
level police force under regional control.
Armies of both entities are under the control of a new state-level
Ministry of Defence as of January 1, 2006.