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Government, Executive

direct popular vote, nullification, deputy ministers, Council of Ministers, chairmanship

Bosnia’s three-member joint presidency comprises one Muslim, one Croat, and one Serb member. All members are formally equal, with chairmanship of the collective body rotating every six months. The members of the presidency are elected by direct popular vote from their respective entities (two from the federation, one from the Serb Republic). Although the first elections, in 1996, were for two-year terms, the members are to be elected for four-year terms. The collective presidency is supposed to make decisions by consensus, and a provision exists for nullification of a non-unanimous decision by the presidency if so demanded by the entity whose representative has been outvoted. The presidency, as head of state, has some powers related to foreign policy and represents Bosnia internationally. The presidency also nominates the government, composed of Muslim and Serb co-prime ministers (with a Croat deputy prime minister) and a cabinet known as the Council of Ministers. No more than two-thirds of the members of this cabinet may be from the Muslim-Croat federation, and each minister must have deputy ministers from the other two national groups. Ministers are confirmed by the central legislature.

Article key phrases:

direct popular vote, nullification, deputy ministers, Council of Ministers, chairmanship, foreign policy, elections, powers, head of state, cabinet, entity, consensus, thirds, provision, representative, government, decisions, months, members


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