"We are examining around 700 cases of citizenship granted between 1995 and 2000. These were granted under the law that was valid in that period and entitled members of the B-H armed forces to receive B-H citizenship. Passports, however, were also given to people who had never been in Bosnia-Hercegovina and who never returned to Bosnia-Hercegovina after being granted citizenship," Mektic said. The B-H Federation MUP (Interior Ministry) has recently filed criminal reports on 15 state and B-H Federation officials who had illegally awarded citizenship.
"After several months of investigations, we have determined that there were 15 persons who may be reasonably suspected of violating the law by issuing B-H citizenship to people who were not entitled to it. The ministry believes they should be charged with abuse of power and forgery of documents," Nezavisne Novine was told by Robert Cvrtak, spokesman for the B-H Federation MUP's Police Administration.
The B-H Security Ministry, which is currently determining the number of illegally issued passports and the identity of their recipients, recently received a request from the European police to check the identity of a B-H citizen suspected of terrorist activities. It was determined that this person had been granted B-H citizenship, but had never been in Bosnia-Hercegovina.
"This is just one case. People were granted citizenship without identity checks, so it is quite possible that they include a large number of those suspected of various illegal activities. They were issued citizenship even if they had been in Bosnia-Hercegovina for only two to three days," Mektic said.
Mektic confirmed that the citizenship had been granted immediately after the war ended up until two to three years ago.
"We are still conducting checks, but there are indications that people of Afro-Asian origin who have been linked to illegal and terrorist activity were being granted citizenship until two to three years ago. These are just indications and we are checking them," Mektic concluded.