Dayton Peace Agreements

The American-led Dayton Peace Agreements, signed in November 1995, divided Bosnia and Herzegovina into two entities. 49% of the Bosnian territory remained Serbian (the Republika Srpska) and 51% would belong to the Bosniak-Croat federation (the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina). The presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, following the Agreements, is a three-person rotating institution, where each of the main ethnic groups elects a representative to the presidency. Under the relatively weak central government there are two more powerful entity governments, the Republika Srpska and the Federation of Bosnia and Herzegovina. An elaborate system of controls ensures that each ethnic group has a veto. This is an important part of the agreement since competing memories of the war and a profound lack of trust within and between the three ethnic groups are still strong.