In part one of our story on Russian investments in Bosnia and Herzegovina, we took a look at the history of Russian financial involvement in this country in the Western Balkans, showing that, despite what on the surface looks like a large portfolio of serious investments, Russian investors, be it state-owned companies or private entrepreneurs, hardly stand to profit.
The Russian-speaking diaspora abroad is quite numerous in many Western countries and is made up of many different waves of emigration – from descendants of White Russian émigrés to those who are arriving today. However, all these waves are characterized by a fairly high level of support for Vladimir Putin. It's especially surprising to see such sentiments amongst people who emigrated in Soviet times, not so much for economic reasons but rather in search of freedom.
In Bosnia and Herzegovina, a crucial aspect of Russia's image is that it is a strategic foreign ally with significant financial power. The media and political leaders of Republika Srpska (RS), the Serb-majority constituent part of Bosnia and Herzegovina, often mention Russia's investment power.
The Integrity Initiative is a non-partisan programme of The Institute for Statecraft, a non-partisan charity which promotes good governance. The Integrity Initiative looks specifically at the use of disinformation and malign influence to undermine the values of democratic societies.
This is an edited translation of an article in Spanish published on Agenda Pública/El País. Published with permission.
The original is here.