The United States flew a pair of B-1B Lancer bombers over the Bosnia capital of Sarajevo on Tuesday, which it said was a “demonstration of our enduring partnership with the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina and our rock-solid commitment to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of BiH.”
The flyover, which also participated in joint-military exercises in Tuzla between Bosnian and American forces, also comes amid increased secessionist messaging from Bosnian Serb leader Milorad Dodik, who is president of Republika Srpska.
We mean it when we say that the United States is Bosnia and Herzegovina’s true friend and partner, and that we are here to stay.
Today’s B-1B bomber flyover is a demonstration of our enduring partnership with the Armed Forces of Bosnia and Herzegovina and our rock-solid… pic.twitter.com/iP7UqFT4NZ
— US Embassy Sarajevo (@USEmbassySJJ) May 30, 2023
In March, the United States condemned threats by Dodik to secede from Bosnia and Herzegovina, calling his statements “irresponsible, dangerous, and detrimental to BiH’s progress towards further Euro-Atlantic integration.”
Likewise, Dodik’s meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin earlier this month was met with ire from American and European officials following talks of increased trade and cooperation. Likewise, Dodik said that the Dayton Agreement, which ended the Bosnia War, was “destroyed by those who promote rules in the world, not international law,” which was directed at the United States and other Western powers.
Dodik called the flyover “provocation, intimidation and pressure,” further saying that “Americans are showing off force. They see Bosnia and Herzegovina as a guinea pig.” He also called American ambassador to BiH, Michael Murphy, a “bastard” for the flyover, according to the media outlet N1.