Today, I join the international community and the people of Bosnia and Herzegovina in marking the 25th anniversary of the Dayton Accords, which brought an end to the worst conflict on the European continent since World War II. On this day, we celebrate the efforts of the peacemakers, even as we mourn the loss of approximately 100,000 lives and the displacement of millions more.
The Dayton Accords brought peace to Bosnia and Herzegovina and reaffirmed its sovereignty, territorial integrity, and independence. Yet, a quarter century later, it is clear that the work to promote justice, reconciliation, and a functional, multi-ethnic Bosnia and Herzegovina remains incomplete. Too often, we have seen nationalism win out over national interest and the enrichment of a few coming before reforms to benefit the many. This anniversary is an occasion for all the parties to reflect on the possibility of a brighter future and to recommit to the difficult but necessary steps to build a fully-functioning Bosnia and Herzegovina for all its citizens.
As president, I look forward to working with the international community and the people of Bosnia and Herzegovina to finally achieve the promise contained in the Dayton Accords — a prosperous, just, and democratic Bosnia and Herzegovina in the heart of a Europe whole, free, and at peace.