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Dayton agreements key to Bosnia settlement - Lavrov

MOSCOW. June 9 (Interfax) - The Bosnian settlement process should proceed step-by-step and should be governed by the fundamental principles of the Dayton agreements, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said at a meeting with High Representative for Bosnia and Herzegovina Christian Schwarz-Schilling on Friday.

Lavrov called for adjusting various aspects of the effort, underscoring the need for Bosnia to encourage broader interaction between its different ethnic groups.

"Nevertheless, we believe that it should be done gradually, giving careful consideration to every step. It is also necessary to analyze all strong and weak points, to follow the fundamental principles of the Dayton Agreement and to equally respect the interests of all the peoples [in the country]," he said.

The international community's approach to the Bosnian settlement process will also change soon, the minister said. "There is no point in ignoring the fact that not all problems have been resolved. They should be tackled carefully and delicately in order not to upset any previously reached results," he said.

Careful preparation for the October elections in Bosnia is crucial, because this vote will determine further efforts by the international community in the settlement process, Lavrov said.

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