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Building military-to-military relations with Bosnia-Herzegovina is in our common interest

Text: HDF General Staff | Photo: HDF General Staff |  11:56 December 4, 2023

In the last days of November, a professional delegation from the Ministry of Defence and the Joint Staff of the armed forces of Bosnia-Herzegovina paid a visit to Hungary at the invitation of Lieutenant General Ferenc Kajári, Deputy Chief of HDF General Staff. The upcoming change of command of EUFOR Operation Althea in the Balkans state – where a Hungarian general will become commander of the European Union’s military operation as of January 2024 – gave a special topicality to their stay here.

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The high-ranking group of visitors was headed by Dženan Redžo, Assistant Minister of Defence BiH for Defence Policy and Plans, who was accompanied by Predrag Duric, Assistant Minister of Defence for Intelligence and Security Affairs and by the Force Planning Chief of the Joint Staff Lieutenant Colonel Nebojša Stajić. The guests were received by Lieutenant General Ferenc Kajári and Deputy State Secretary for Defence Policy László Hajnik. In his speech, Lieutenant General Kajári highlighted that Hungary’s security is inconceivable without the stability of the Western Balkans region, and therefore we are fully committed to tackling the challenges affecting the region, which is visibly demonstrated by the extent of our military engagement and presence as well.

At the first professional meeting between the two countries, the delegations discussed the security challenges of the affected area and the possible forms of tackling these challenges, the efforts made by the two states to develop their armed forces as well as issues related to operational engagement. The hosts presented the ambitions for military innovation and the governmental aims related to the development of Hungarian defence industry. The Bosnian partners reaffirmed that in view of the security challenges affecting our common geographical region, they consider it highly important to strengthen the military-to-military relations and the professional cooperation between our countries, which was limited essentially to the fields of training and preparation in the last 15 years. An agreement has been reached on the deepening of military-to-military relations in the coming years in the framework of increasingly intensive professional meetings and events that primarily take the needs of the Bosnian partner into consideration.

During the visit, the Bosnian delegation met with Major General Dr. László Sticz, the next commander of EUFOR Operation Althea, who reaffirmed Hungary’s and his own personal commitment to guaranteeing the security of Bosnia–Herzegovina and the success of the EU operation. At the meeting, Assistant Minister of Defence Redžo assured Major General Dr. Sticz of the full-scale support of the Ministry of Defence of BiH in the performance of his commander’s duties.