US imposes sanctions against Bosnian Serb leader

The Biden administration on Wednesday announced sanctions against Bosnian Serb leader Milorad Dodik, accusing him of “corrupt activities” that threaten to destabilize the region and undermine a U.S.-brokered peace accord from more than 25 years ago.

The Treasury Department also alleged that Dodik has used his leadership position to accumulate wealth through graft and bribery.

The U.S. also sanctioned a media outlet, Alternativna Televizija d.o.o. Banja Luka, that it said was owned by a company linked to Dodik’s family. The administration says Dodik acquired the organization to advance his own agenda and exerts behind-the-scenes control over its content, including by mandating approval of politically sensitive stories.

The practical impact of the Biden administration’s actions is that any property or interest belonging to Dodik in the United States is now blocked.

Dodik, a member of Bosnia’s tripartite presidency that also includes a Bosniak and a Croat official, has for years been advocating the separation of the Bosnian Serb semi-autonomous mini-state from Bosnia and having it become part of neighboring Serbia.

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