U.S. State Department Geographic Bureaus: Europe and Canada Bureau

U.S. Department of State
95/11/01 Fact Sheet--Bosnia: The Dayton Process
Bureau of Public Affairs


The Dayton Process

On November 1, the parties to the conflict in the former Yugoslavia began participating in high-level political talks at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base outside Dayton, Ohio. The purpose of the "proximity peace talks" is to encourage the parties to reach a comprehensive regional settlement.

The sessions are building on principles reached in Geneva September 8 and in New York September 26. These include:

o The preservation of Bosnia as a single state containing the Muslim- Croat Federation and a Bosnian Serb entity;

o The 51/49 percent formula as a basis for territorial arrangements;

o A constitutional structure establishing the institutions of a central government and specifying relations between the two territorial entities;

o The necessity of free and fair elections;

o Respect for human rights.

The parties to the conflict are represented in the Dayton negotiations by the Presidents of Bosnia, Croatia, and Serbia.

Assistant Secretary Richard Holbrooke, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov, and EU Negotiator Carl Bildt are co-chairing the talks. Other Contact Group countries (France, Germany and Britain) are represented at the political director level.

There is no agreed date for the conclusion of the talks, but if the talks are successful, they will be followed by a conference on implementation of the settlement in London and an international peace conference in Paris.

The substance of the current talks includes the range of territorial and constitutional matters. Among the outstanding issues are:

-- The location of the internal boundary between the Bosnian-Croat Federation and the Bosnian Serb entity;

-- The status of Sarajevo;

-- Practical steps for separating forces and establishing a permanent cessation of hostilities;

-- Procedures for free and fair elections under international supervision;

-- Procedures for the return of refugees and displaced persons to their homes.

November 1995 (###)

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