It is being described as the most serious crisis in the Balkans region since the Bosnian war, which ended in 1995 after ethnic cleansing atrocities killed tens of thousands and forced millions to escape.
The relative peace since then is being endangered by growing nationalistic rhetoric and a vote to split from Bosnia and Herzegovina.
On Friday, politicians in the Bosnia Serb Republic voted to pull out of Bosnia and Herzegovina’s three major institutions – the armed forces as well as the legal and tax systems.
Condemnation of the secessionist move has come from the United States, the European Union, the United Kingdom, France, Germany and Italy – all warning that the stability of the whole Balkan region is threatened.
Why do the Serbs want to quit now?
Presenter: Kim Vinnell
Reuf Bajrovic – Former Bosnian government minister
Zarko Korac – Former deputy prime minister of Serbia
Bodo Weber – Senior associate, Democratisation Policy Council