USAID’s Justice Activity in Bosnia and Herzegovina (USAID’s JA) is a continuation of capacity building activities in order to support the institutions and organizations that play an important role in the justice system and it is an integral part of the wider effects of the US government to improve democracy and the rule of law in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
USAID’s JA is a five year initiative that began in late 2014 and ends in 2019. The project is worth 9.5 million US dollars.
USAID’s JA relies on the results of the activities of the previous two justice projects - USAID's Justice Sector Development Project I and II (USAID JSDP I and II). The project deals with the issues and priorities identified in the relevant documents of both the European Union (such as Reports on the Progress of Bosnia and Herzegovina or recommendations of the Structured Dialogue on the Judiciary) and the relevant BiH institutions (such as the Justice Sector Reform Strategy and other strategic documents concerning Justice).
In the course of the project (October 2014 - September 2019), assistance will be provided in a variety of areas defined on the results of previously made reforms and in coordination with the relevant institutions (primarily the High Judicial and Prosecutorial Council, respective ministries of justice and other judicial institutions) as well as with other international organizations and donors, foremost the European Union as a partner. The expected results which will be achieved in the course of the project are given below.
The project employs 12 staff, most of whom are experienced professionals with significant experience in both the domestic judicial institutions, as well as working on projects in the field of rule of law.
USAID’s JA fits into a broader USAID's Strategy for development cooperation with Bosnia and Herzegovina aimed at developing more functional and accountable institutions and government that will meet the needs of citizens, which, in the context of this project, will be realized through the strengthening of the actors in the justice sector.
USAID's Justice Activity in Bosnia and Herzegovina (JA) is a five year initiative which began at the end of 2014 and will end in 2019. Total cost of the project is 9,5 million USD. To date, the JA has worked with and provided support to 19 Prosecutors’ Offices in BiH. Excellent cooperation has been achieved with the HJPC and APIK on issues related to implementation of activities which should lead to strengthening of integrity in judiciary. USAID’s Justice Activity in Bosnia and Herzegovina fits into the wider USAID Country Development Cooperation Strategy for BiH, which aims to make the government more responsive to citizen’s needs; and make its institutions functional and accountable which, under this Activity, will be done through strengthening the justice sector actors, in particular.
One of the cornerstones of the Justice Project is the promotion of EU accession of BiH. Therefore activities have been designed fully in line with the EU Progress Reports’ observations, as well as the Recommendations from the Structured Dialogue on Justice between the EU and BiH. All of these have pointed to high levels of corruption and in particular the need to enhance the capabilities of the justice system to fight it. A large backlog of cases burdens the whole system and investigation and prosecution in high-profile cases remain insufficient. Little progress is being made in advancing reforms to reduce corruption and so anti-corruption policies still remain a cross-cutting priority for BiH.
Observing that the local government strategic documents have also recognized the same issues and the need to tackle them, the USAID’s Justice Project has tailored its activities to support the local actors and of course complement other donor efforts to help BiH on the road to EU.
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