About 400,000 Serbs lay claim to property in the Federation of BiH, but there is a risk of their losing the property in the process of harmonization of cadastral and land registry data on immovable property, which is conducted in a non-transparent manner in the Federation. As part of a joint action of the Republic of Srpska and Serbia, a campaign is starting with the aim of informing the concerned Serbs in the Federation about the ways to protect their rights.
It is worrying that Serbs originating from the Federation of BiH are being left without their property during data harmonization, without even being notified, because the public call is published only in the Official Gazette of the Federation and local daily newspapers, which are not available to Serbs living around the world.
In many cases, the ownership is registered to the state, entity, canton, municipality or a person using Serbian property without authorization. That is why Srpska and Serbia are launching a joint information campaign to preserve the property of Serbs in the Federation.
The director of the Directorate for Cooperation with the Diaspora and Serbs in the Region, Arnaud Gouillon, said that he expected cooperation and support from Serbian media also from the diaspora, so that as many Serbs from FBiH as possible would learn about their property rights. He also assessed that Srpska and Serbia had reacted on time, and that people could contact them even after the expiration of the 60 day period from the publication of invitation to register ownership in the Official Gazette of BiH.
– In the 21st century, the right to private property is a basic human right, and with this campaign we are defending the human rights of Serbs from the Federation of BiH and expecting support, a wider support of the entire society in that intention – Gouillon added.
The director of the Representation of Srpska in Serbia, Mlađen Cicović, expressed his gratitude to the institutions of Serbia and Srpska engaged to help protect the property of Serbs in FBiH, as well as the media, and pointed out that Srpska and Serbia were conducting a joint action because data harmonization in FBiH was absolutely non-transparent.
– I believe that with this joint campaign in protecting the property of Serbs in the Federation, by activating our associations in Serbia and the region, activating our diaspora, through social networks, through diplomatic and consular missions of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, through our Church, we will reach every Serb – he noted.
The aim of the campaign is to inform every property owner or their descendant that they can exercise their rights by contacting expert legal aid offices.
– They should identify themselves, leave their name and location of their property, and then the Republic of Srpska Office for Legal Aid will conduct that procedure and take their place in following everything that happens regarding their property – Gouillon pointed out.
Such offices exist in several cities in Srpska, and information on property rights is available to all people originating from the Federation. Cicović added that 4,447 requests were resolved in these offices as of 10 August.
We can and must fight against injustice, said Gouillon and Cicović, adding that Srpska and Serbia had reacted on time.
Cicović invited all the concerned citizens to call 00387 55 490 940 or email email@example.com.