The US State Department has blacklisted Osman Mehmedagić – “Osmica,” the creator of the affair and the construct of Janez Janša as the author of the “non-paper,” which was disseminated to the Slovenian and Bosnian public through Mehmedagić’s collaborator, the so-called “journalist” Avdo Avdić, and POP TV. Avdić is a Sarajevo-based journalist who was the reference interlocutor of the pro-government web portal “Necenzurirano.si” (Uncensored), which, together with other mainstream media, was responsible for creating a psychosis around the document, whose authorship was attributed to Janša. Necenzurirano even went so far as to publish a document, which supposedly proved the existence of the famous non-paper, in order to sully Janša’s name. But unfortunately for them, the authenticity of the document could not be confirmed in any way.
The US Undersecretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, Brian E. Nelson, explained that Osman Mehmedagić – “Osmica” is among the individuals who pose a threat to regional stability, institutional trust, and the aspirations of those seeking democratic governance in the Western Balkans. “The United States will continue to target those who perpetuate corruption and undermine the post-war agreements and institutions established as part of the hard-won Dayton Peace Agreement.” According to Nelson, Mehmedagić, who is a citizen of Bosnia and Herzegovina, in his official capacity as Director-General of the Bosnian Intelligence and Security Agency, misused a state-owned telecommunications company for the benefit of the Party of Democratic Action (SDA), which represents one of the largest political parties in Bosnia and Herzegovina. Mehmedagić used the state-owned telecommunications company BH Telecom to collect cellular activity on Bosnian politicians who are not affiliated with the SDA party. He also ordered an individual to monitor a government official, according to the U.S. Department of the Treasury.
The Brussels correspondent of the Delo newspaper, Peter Žerjavič, is the one who tweeted about two years ago that there were rumours spreading in the Brussels circles about the existence of a so-called non-paper on the Balkans, allegedly prepared by the then-Prime Minister Janez Janša and based on an ethnic understanding of borders. Janša immediately denied the allegation, explaining that he had last met the President of the European Council, Charles Michel, in 2020. “I could hardly have physically handed him anything in February or March this year, as the obscure website you are referring to says. While Slovenia is seriously looking for solutions for the development of the region and the EU perspective of the Western Balkan countries, such writings seek to prevent this very objective,” Janša wrote at the time. Shortly after Žerjavič made the story public, he also wrote: “Apparently, it’s Brussels Confusion Day again. Now the European Council says they can’t confirm that they received a non-paper …”
“In recent days, I have also been inundated with calls and numerous concerned messages from Bosnia and Herzegovina, warning that with his proposal for a peaceful break-up of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Prime Minister Janša is trying to complete the Milosević-Tuđman plan of creating a big Serbia and Croatia. Such irresponsible behaviour could lead to a new war in the Balkans,” the President of the Social Democrats party (Socialni demokrati – SD), Tanja Fajon, said at the time. Although both Janša and Brussels denied the allegations, our left-wing media and politicians attributed the non-paper to Janša, who allegedly used it to redraw the borders between the countries of the former Yugoslavia, especially in the area of Bosnia and Herzegovina. Many people already thought at the time that the affair had been constructed abroad for the purposes of political smearing of the Slovenian authorities of the time, as Žerjavič shared a news item from the Bosnian portal politicki.ba., the author of which was Sead Numanović, who had written a eulogy for Fajon in the newspaper Dnevni Avaz shortly before the European Parliament elections in 2014. He wrote how her election as an MEP would be good for both Slovenia and Bosnia and Herzegovina.
The reporting of the Necenzurirano.si web portal was particularly telling. Primož Cirman and Vesna Vuković published an exclusive document which allegedly testified to the existence of “an unofficial diplomatic document which speaks of the dismemberment of Bosnia and Herzegovina, the annexation of Republika Srpska to Serbia, and the unification of Kosovo with Albania.” When we published the document on our portal, we received a request from Necenzurirano to withdraw their document, which of course, only increased suspicions that something was amiss in the whole affair. After all, in this case, it was a two-page document, without a header, without a date, without a signature. That any serious person, let alone a professional journalist, would not even consider publishing such a thing, especially in such a heated situation that could escalate, was pointed out at the time by Darko Mršić, a Bosnian-born Slovenian journalist and former chairman of the SD party’s youth wing in Borovnica. He said that anyone could have written something like what was published on Necenzurirano.si.
Avdić is considered a puppet
In an interview with Dnevnik.ba, Mršić also pointed out that it is interesting that the alleged “non-paper” was published by the Necenzurirano.si portal, whose reference interlocutor is the Sarajevo-based journalist Avdo Avdić. “The portal from which the alleged non-paper originates is a harsh critic of the government of Janez Janša, and the portal itself was created when Janša took over the Slovenian government,” he explained. For Mršić, the alleged “non-paper” had no credibility, nor did the map of the division of the countries of the former Yugoslavia. At the time, he expressed his belief that the affair had been prepared according to an already established protocol in the Sarajevo-Ljubljana connection. The opposition parties on the left, despite the coronavirus crisis, took every opportunity to attack the Janša government and Janša himself. According to Mršić, Avdić, who had also gotten the attention of the local public through scandals – namely, the one about Slovenian Wahhabis recruited by the Croatian security-intelligence services and the “Travnik case,” when he and Emir Suljagić spoke about the apartheid practised by the Croatian minority against the Bosnian majority in the Travnik grammar school – was working with the portal Necenzurirano.si. As Mršić said, this came at the cost of Slovenia’s international reputation ahead of the upcoming Presidency of the Council of the European Union.
Several media outlets in Bosnia and Herzegovina have published a number of articles about journalist Avdo Avdić, questioning his journalistic integrity. It is well known that Avdić is an extension of the politician Bakir Izetbegović, which is why journalists have also accused him of being a mere puppet. A picture of Avdić and OSA Director Osman Medmedagić was also revealed. Avdić’s media outlet, Istraga, was said to be a portal that was taking on the political opponents of the then-OSA director, Mehmedagić. Avdić had previously appeared as a guest at an event of the highly political Slovene Association of Journalists, and had also worked with POP TV editor Tjaša Slokar Kos. The latter worked for the web portal Istraga, owned by the Bosnian mercenary Avdić. Although her name has since miraculously disappeared from the website, one can easily get an idea of how the exchange of information took place when the alleged affair was reported.