Author: Z. Kolobara (Hercegovina.info)
Nominally Croat member of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina and his delegation were supposed to attend the marking of the International Human Rights Day and the 75th anniversary of the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in Geneva from December 10 to December12. However, that did not happen, and the citizens will eventually pay for this diplomatic failure and inertness.
Namely, in the middle of December Komšić’s associates booked seven standard rooms and one suite in the Hotel del Bergues, which belongs to the luxurious hotel chain “Four Season”, one of the most expensive and most luxurious hotels in Geneva, learns Hercegovina.info.
Geneva was the place of historic meeting between the Russian president Vladimir Putin and the US president Joe Biden on July 16, 2021. During their stay in Switzerland Russian president Putin stayed at the hotel Mandarin, and Biden stayed at the hotel Intercontinental in Geneva. Rooms of the two hotels are almost half the price of the rooms where Željko Komišić and his delegation were to stay in the Hotel des Bergues.
The prices showed in the picture above are prices set as the average prices of the hotel if one person needs a one-night stay.
As our reliable sources claim, Komšić’s luxurious hotel is located right next to the lake. Of course, the suite was booked for Komšić, and the citizens financing him would have paid 2.400 EUR (BAM 4.700) for his room only. The total price of rooms for the other members of the delegation would be around 9.000 EUR (BAM 17.600). While a vast majority of the citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina cannot make ends meet and can only dream of sleeping in a hotel, Komšić’s trip to Geneva would cost the taxpayers and all citizens BAM 22.300!
In the hotel jargon, “suite” denotes a type of room or an apartment that is usually bigger than the standard hotel room and often includes additional rooms in addition to the bedroom. Suite usually has a living room, sometimes with a sofa that can turn into a bed, and can have additional amenities such as a kitchen or a dining room. Suite apartments are designed to give more space and luxury, and are often more expensive than the standard rooms. They are ideal for longer stays, families or those seeking more comfort and privacy.
Research of the booking sites shows that there is only one hotel more expensive than Komšić’s and that is Hotel Woodward, which is also located next to the lake in Geneva.
And that’s not all
Komšić’s office abruptly cancelled the hotel booking at the beginning of December, two weeks after the request was made. Due to hotel’s strict policy, refunds weren’t possible, precisely to avoid cancellation by frivolous guests. Ultimately, and it was confirmed a few days after, the hotel agreed to have more than 5.000 Euro (“only” BAM 11.000) paid for the no-show of Komšić and his entourage in Geneva, which will be paid by the citizens of Bosnia and Herzegovina.
Željko Komšić was supposed to attend marking of 75th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, but as we have learned, the tip to Switzerland was cancelled due to the trip to Brussels where he met with the European leaders.
Thematic consultations were organized during these two days in Geneva. The organizers note that this high-level event “Human Rights 75” was convened by the UN human rights office and co-organized by the Government of Switzerland. The participants were member states, civil society organizations, cities and local governments, human rights activists, parliamentary representatives, United Nations’ entities, academics, experts, young people and artists. Additional events were held in the regional centers, the Palace of Nations and in the virtual rooms.
Where was Željko Komšić supposed to stay?
Although he presents himself as a person who has empathy for the little man, the member of the BiH Presidency is clearly not averse to making himself comfortable. This luxury hotel was designed by renowned interior designer Pierre-Yves Rochon, and as part of the exclusive Four Seasons, the hotel is housed in a historic building. All rooms at the Four Seasons feature a unique luxury style with classic French furniture and offer city, garden or lake views. The hotel is located in the center of Geneva, a 10-minute walk from the train station and right next to the Mont Blanc bus station. The luxury offered by this hotel was obviously recognized by the guests, so this facility was rated with a very high 9.8 when it comes to the stay and comfort of a person.
He likes luxury and doesn’t like to be alone
The delegation of the Croat member of the BiH Presidency, Željko Komšić, headed by him, spent more than BAM 6.200 at the VIP lounge of the airport in Frankfurt in just one day.
At the end of last year, Frankfurt Airport issued an invoice of November 1, 2023 for the use of services. More precisely, a request was made for refund of the expenses paid by the Embassy of BiH in Germany, namely the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of BiH.
Then, as in the case of cancelled trip to Switzerland, there were as many as eight people in Komšić’s delegation and they all used the VIP lounge. Komšić’s friends and advisors treated themselves, together with Komišić, to the VIP lounge of Frankfurt airport. His wife Sabina and Ferid Musić, Sandra Filipović, Sanjin Mesihović and others were also on that list.
At that time the general public wondered about the reasons for using the services in the VIP lounges since he had to be in New York on November 2nd already for the UN Security Council session.
By the way, VIP lounges in airports are used to welcome and bid farewell to the high-ranking officials, i.e. persons of special importance, as well as to organize their business or diplomatic meetings.
A delegation of 22 members
When the BiH Embassy was opened in Podgorica in December 2007, Komšić, as reported by the media, took as many as 22 people with him. There was no decision of the BiH Presidency on this.
Komšić’s delegation, which traveled by seven cars, included six advisers from his office, one member of the BiH Presidency Protocol, 10 members of security, and four drivers.
No one from the offices of the other two members of the then Presidency, Haris Silajdžić and Nebojša Radmanović, went to Podgorica.
Skiing “on the house”
Komšić is also remembered for the fact that he, together with four members of his office, had in 2014 justified a “business” trip with an invoice from a ski resort.
Komšić and his colleagues “officially” traveled to three different countries at the same time, Italy, Germany and Austria, and all of them justified the costs of overnight stays for three nights with an invoice from the Austrian ski resort Solden.
Furthermore, going back to the end of 2011 will bring us to a report of Komšić’s extravagance, who was also in the Presidency at that time.
In that period, the office of the Croat member of the BiH Presidency, Željko Komšić, had in nine months of 2011 spent almost as much as the offices of the other two members of the Presidency – Bakir Izetbegović and Nebojša Radmanović combined.
Komšić’s office spent a total of 153.926 Euro in nine months, while the other two offices collectively spent only 44.000 Euro more.
At that time Komšić’s office spent 42.560 Euro for hiring persons under the service contract, Izetbegović’s office spent 12.000 Euro, while Radmanović’s office spent 5.650 Euro for the same purpose.
Komšić’s office did not respond to our inquiries about the almost field trip to Geneva for 11 days nor to our reminders from last week. Also, as we have learned, this planned trip was not coordinated or communicated with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Although they are not legally obliged to do so, it would be diplomatically frivolous and irresponsible towards the host in any country.